Time is everything in fast-paced sports like hockey. A split second can determine whether a goalie makes a game-changing save, a player scores a career-altering goal, or a defender locks up that threat before they have a chance to get off the shot. For many years, EA’s NHL series felt too slow and unresponsive to be a difference maker, but that’s starting to change. Last year’s dramatically overhauled skating made the players feel dangerous on their skates again, and NHL 20 adds stick speed, making one-timers as effective as they were when first introduced in way back in NHL ‘94. This innovation takes the on-ice action forward, but at the same time, EA’s stubborn refusal to improve and refresh some of its most popular modes keeps NHL 20 from really breaking away from the pack.