The MIAC has also changed up its point system for this year's standings. It will award three points for a regulation win, two for an overtime or shootout win and one for an overtime or shootout loss.
The hope is that the shootout and new point system will unclog a jam-packed standings, especially in a league that has just 16 conference games. Last season, the league's shootout press release points out, "there was a possible six-way tie looming for first place" going into the final weekend of the season, and eight of the league's nine teams still had a shot to make the five-team postseason tournament.
How exciting would it be to see a playoff spot decided by a shootout on the final day of the regular season? Still not as thrilling as an overtime game-winner, although, oddly, the result will be the same.
Just six MIAC games ended in a tie last season, while just four others went to overtime. A year earlier, there were eight ties, so the shootout may be a rare sight.
In small doses, it might be kind of fun.
Shane Frederick is a Free Press staff writer. Read his blog at mankatofreepresshockey.blogspot.com and follow him on Twitter @puckato.