The Central Collegiate Hockey Association announced this Monday (Sept. 28) that, effective at the start of conference play on Oct. 23, a regulation time or overtime victory will be worth three points in the league standings.
"We feel that this is a fairer system," CCHA Commissioner Tom Anastos said. "Now, all teams will have access to the same number of points throughout the regular season and every game is worth three points whether it is decided in regulation time, overtime or a shootout. We also feel this will give teams an added incentive to win a game in regulation time or overtime because they will gain the maximum number of points for doing so."
This season, a regulation or sudden-death overtime win will earn a team three points in the standings, a shootout victory will garner two points, a shootout loss will be rewarded by one point, and a loss in regulation or overtime will mean no points. So, any game that goes to a shootout will see the victor credited with a tie and a shootout win in the conference standings, while the loser will receive credit for a tie.
The new points system will differ from the system utilized in 2008-09, where a regulation/overtime victory and a shootout win meant two points, a shootout loss gave a team one point, and a regulation/overtime loss was awarded no points.
This new system gives greater incentive to earn a victory in regulation or during the five-minute overtime period than winning in a shootout., but teams that perform well in shootouts will still have a clear advantage.
However, like last year, CCHA league games that are decided in a shootout will go down as a tie in the overall national rankings and have no bearing on a team's Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) come NCAA Tournament time. Additionally, a shootout will again not be used to decide games during the CCHA Tournament, with the exception of the third-place game at Joe Louis Arena.
"I believe this is a more equitable system and certainly puts greater emphasis on winning in either regulation or overtime," said Ferris State head coach Bob Daniels, who will start his 18th year behind the Bulldogs' bench this season. "The system still rewards the winner of a shootout, but not to the extent of equalling a regulation or overtime victory. Now all of our league games are worth three points."
Ferris State will commence its 32nd year of intercollegiate competition at the NCAA Division I level this 2009-10 season, starting with a home exhibition game versus Wilfred Laurier (Ontario) this Sunday (Oct. 4) at FSU's Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids, Mich. Opening faceoff is scheduled for 2:05 p.m. (EDT).