How Long Does A Period Last In Hockey? [Facts!]

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The NHL season is almost over, which means there’s not much time for reflection. Now that the season’s winding down, let’s take a minute to look back at how the season finished and the impact it’s had on the game.

The Final Stretch

The final month of the season was an absolute grind. Teams were battling for that final playoff spot and some were even hovering around the.500 mark. As a hockey fan, it was amazing to see how competitive the last month of the season was with the finale being especially intriguing.

The final week of the season was filled with wild card playoff games, with most leagues deciding to continue the action right up to the wire. Fans got to watch their favorite teams fight it out right till the end and it was an absolute blast. Whether you were a hockey fan or not, it was hard to escape the excitement that surrounded those final games.

An Incredible Comeback

The Calgary Flames went through an amazing season, bouncing back from a 12th-place finish in 2014-15 to finish second in the Pacific Division and earn a wild card spot in the playoffs. The turnaround was amazing and it’s hard to put into words the elation that came with a second-place finish. There are so many storylines that surrounded the turnaround, but let’s focus on the Flames and their incredible comeback, in particular.

When the season began, it looked like the Flames had a long road to recovery after a brutal year in 2015. They didn’t score many goals and the goaltending was up and down, at best. The team made a number of moves at the trade deadline, adding some much-needed firepower, and it paid immediate dividends. The Flames knocked off the Winnipeg Jets in five games in the first round of the playoffs and then swept the Anaheim Ducks in the second round. The only thing standing in their way of a third Stanley Cup was the Los Angeles Kings.

Down 3-1 in the third game of their series, the Kings staged a comeback and took the series in seven games. Much like the Flames had done in the previous round, the Kings fought back from a three-games-to-one deficit to advance to the Western Conference Final. They would go on to lose to the New York Rangers in five games.

When Calgary won the Stanley Cup in 1989, it was one of the most incredible sports triumphs ever. Since then, they’ve won two more championships and it’s safe to say that this year was another significant step in the right direction for the franchise. While it’s been a while since they’ve been able to enjoy such a successful season, the pain of an extended championship drought has finally subsided and the Flames can now look forward to the next phase of their evolution.

How Important Is Goaltending?

As a hockey fan, it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly which position helps a team the most. Obviously, scoring goals is critical, but it’s not the only thing that determines a game’s outcome. Defense, getting pucks out of the zone, and preventing goals are just as, if not more, important. While the league is evolving and teams are playing a more fluid style, strong goaltending can still be the key to turning a game upside-down.

Looking at the statistics, it’s clear that goalies have a major impact on their teams’ success. Take a look at the stats for the top 15 scorers and top 15 goalies over the past three seasons and you’ll see a clear correlation between a team’s offense and its goalie‘s performance. The correlation is especially high in the case of Corey Crawford of the Chicago Blackhawks. Over the past three years, Crawford has posted stellar numbers, especially in regards to goals against average.

Since he began playing organized hockey at the age of six, Crawford had previous experience playing in the minor leagues, but this year he stepped up to the big leagues and provided stellar performance. His numbers this year were excellent, aside from one minor hiccup in the Stanley Cup Final against the Tampa Bay Lightning. In that game, he made 35 saves in a losing effort. Overall, he posted a 36-save performance in that one game and a 2.23 goals-against-average to go along with it.

Over The Next Five Years

While the season is now over, teams must begin planning for the next one. For the Calgary Flames, it’s about making key decisions regarding their star players and how to best utilize their young guns. Since the season’s end is near, it’s a good time to consider the future of this fantastic team.

After such a strong finish to the season, one would assume that the Flames will be a major player in the coming years. Whether they land a number of key NHL free agents or are able to successfully trade for more youthful hockey players, the team will have an abundance of opportunities to succeed. As a fan, it’s exciting to see how far this team has come and what the future may hold for them.

Final Word

While the 2015-16 NHL season was filled with ups and downs, it was ultimately an excellent one for fans of the sport. The highlight reels, both conventional and viral, are already filling up our social media outlets and the memories will last a lifetime. As a hockey fan, it’s important to look at the big picture and consider how the sport is evolving. While the scoring may be down, the level of competition is at an all-time high and it’s an exciting time to be a part of the game. The future of ice hockey looks incredibly bright and if you’re a fan of the sport, you couldn’t ask for a better time to be a part of it.

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