How overtime works in the NHL playoffs

Overtime hockey is different in the postseason compared to the regular season.

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The 2024 Stanley Cup playoffs have been filled with dramatic overtime finishes.

A total of seven first-round contests required at least one extra period, with the Carolina Hurricanes and New York Islanders even playing to a second OT during their series.

Meanwhile, Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs went to overtime twice in the final three contests of their seven-game showdown. After Toronto won Game 5 in OT, David Pastrnak delivered the series-winner just under two minutes into the extra period of Game 7.

The trend has continued early in Round 2 with two of the first four contests reaching extra time, including another double OT stint for the Hurricanes -- this time in a 4-3 loss to the Rangers Tuesday night.

With a lot more playoff hockey still to come, here's what to know about the postseason overtime rules:

Are there shootouts in the NHL playoffs?

Unlike the regular season, there are no shootouts in the playoffs.

What are the NHL playoff overtime rules?

If a playoff game is tied after three periods, it goes into overtime.

In overtime, 20 minutes are put on the clock and the teams play at five-on-five until a goal is scored.

How many overtimes are there in the NHL playoffs?

If the game remains tied after the first OT, then a second 20-minute overtime at five-on-five follows. This repeats until a goal is scored.

Is NHL overtime sudden death in the playoffs?

Yes, the first team to score in OT wins the game.

What are the NHL overtime rules in the regular season?

Overtime hockey is different in the postseason compared to the regular season. OT in the regular season is a sudden-death period that's five-minutes long and played at three-on-three. If a goal isn't scored in the five minutes of extra time, then the game moves to a shootout.

What's the longest NHL playoff game ever?

The longest game in NHL playoff history came back in 1936, when it took until the sixth overtime to decide a contest between the Detroit Red Wings and Montreal Maroons. Detroit scored the game's only goal at the 176:30 mark.

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are in full swing, and to celebrate Kelly meets the first-ever female keeper of the Stanley Cup, Miragh Bitove.
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