Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 06/07/14 at 04:22 PM ET
from Jeff Z. Klein of the New York Times,
Playoff overtime is no longer as exhausting as it once was. It is being decided more quickly, by fitter players who are still dashing around the ice, their energy levels at or near 100 percent.
Two games three decades apart illustrate the point.
Game 5 of the Western Conference finals between the Kings and the Blackhawks on May 28 included what many players and coaches called the most exhilarating and fastest-paced overtime they had been involved in. Eight minutes went by without a whistle, and it took only 26 minutes of real time to play.
It was abundantly clear that neither team was tired despite the pace, right up to when the Blackhawks’ Michal Handzus finally ended it 22:04 into overtime.
“That may have been the greatest overtime I’ve ever seen,” Blackhawks Coach Joel Quenneville said.
In 1983, Game 7 of the second-round series between the Boston Bruins and the Buffalo Sabres also went to overtime. But in that game, the Sabres were clearly exhausted. When Brad Park fired in the winning goal for the Bruins, three Sabres were flat on the ice, having dropped like bowling pins and seemingly unable to get up. The goal came after only 1:52 of overtime.
more plus some World Cup talk...
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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