Even Dave Nonis doesn’t want so many shootouts

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Even though his team has an NHL-high nine victories in the shootout, Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis would like to see fewer games decided in the breakaway competition.

“As much as we’re having success in the shootout, I still believe that I’d like to end the game by playing a game,” Nonis said Thursday on TSN 1050 radio. “So 4-on-4, 3-on-3, those are things we see throughout the course of the season and regular hockey. So for me, if we could get to that, I would still prefer to go to 3-on-3 before the shootout.”

The Washington Capitals are another team that’s done well in the shootout this season. Similarly, that doesn’t mean their head coach, Adam Oates, likes games decided that way.

“I don’t believe in them,” Oates said late last year. “I know the fans like it, but that’s because it has kind of a carnival effect. I mean, I get it. It’s in the rules, but maybe because I never played with it, I don’t really like it very much.”

We touched on the shootout extensively in this week’s Chip ‘n’ Chase, so if you haven’t already, please do give it a read.

Bottom line: a lot of fans like the shootout, but the more we hear from those involved in the game, including the players, we have to wonder if we’ll see 3-on-3 overtime sooner rather than later.

Related: 3-on-3 overtime gaining support among GMs?