The Bruins and Claude Julien have been notorious this year for employing a three-forward one-defenseman style of play when games reach overtime. They want to end the affair before it gets to a shootout.
The Bruins don't like shootouts. They'd rather take their chances with one defenseman on the ice in four-on-four play than play it safe and have the skills competition to fall back on.
But if the Bruins can't stand playing in shootouts, imagine how the New Jersey Devils feel?
|The Devils are awful in shootouts (via NYdailynews.com)|
They have attempted 30 shots altogether. They have scored one goal. One. In 10 shootouts. Is that even possible?
The only Devil to score in a shootout this season isn't even on the Devils' current NHL roster. Reid Boucher beat Peter Budaj in the first round of the shootout back on December 4, 2013. The Devils still lost 4-3.
Boucher is currently playing for the Albany Devils in the American Hockey League.
The Devils incredible futility in the skills competition has had a damning effect on their playoff hopes; New Jersey sits five points behind Columbus for the final wild-card spot in the East. If they had just won half of their shootouts this year, they would be in contention for the playoffs.
Instead, they find themselves behind Washington and Toronto, and just one point ahead of Ottawa in the standings. With just a handful of games remaining in the regular season, separating themselves from those teams is a near impossible hope.
And you thought the Bruins couldn't stand shootouts.