As you may have noticed by the lack of Canucks hockey, the Canucks are on their bye week, this week, a new thing implemented by the NHLPA in exchange for 3-on-3 at the All Star Game. The NHL took a page out of the NFL, and nothing has gone as expected. The stats show that the bye week has been anything but beneficial for clubs, and long periods of missed games makes it hard to build momentum heading into the playoff race. Yesterday, our own Ryan Biech took a deep dive into this, but I wanted to see what the rest of the team thought of the “bye week.” Here’s what they said.
I don’t like the bye week. It’s dumb. Start the season earlier and space out games a bit better. Here’s another idea: play less games and also start earlier. These guys play 82 games every year and now we have a bye. I imagine a lot of thought went into this but it does seem a bit ridiculous. Just play less games, put ads on the jerseys to make up for lost revenue and there you have it.
The bye week has a hugely negative impact on teams once they reach the other side, and that’s worth noting. Perhaps the league could address it by scheduling teams leaving their bye against teams on the second half of back-to-backs or other teams leaving the bye to level the playing field. I don’t think it’s impossible to make this work. I also tend to think the hockey world deserves a break. Speaking personally, I’ve enjoyed it. I can’t imagine how players who invest themselves so much more than I do feel. And I think they deserve to have a life, too.
I’m not a big fan, mainly due to the negative impact it’s had on performance. There are already numerous uncontrollable factors (travel being a notable example,) that give teams an unintentional competitive advantage. Why add another?
I think it’s just been flawed from the outset. I don’t mind the idea, but it just hurts too many teams competitively. Though I’m sure the players enjoy the break, it needs to be better planned out so it doesn’t hurt teams as much. Limit the back-to-backs throughout the season, and spread it out that way, instead of all at once. The players will end up better in the long run.