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NHL Realignment- I love it!

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Old 12-06-2011, 02:50 PM   #1
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Default NHL Realignment- I love it!

The NHL just passed a new realignment map, pending union approval. I you can probably assume, Im a Red Wings fan (living in Florida.) I absolutely love this proposal. Especially for Detroit, this means the Wings will significantly reduce the amount of travel. They are currently in the Western Conference while residing in the Eastern Time Zone. Playoff games suck for Detroit fans because our usual California opponent games dont start until 10:30pm. They other proposal that I absolutely love is that every team travels to every team every year. This means I get to watch a Wings-Lightning game every year in Florida (last year there was literally more Wings fan at the Tampa game then Lightning fans). Plus, NHL cashcows like the Wings will bring money to other cities because they would actually sellout a couple games. Another caveat it the playoff structure. There would be 4 conferences. No more 6 divisions with 2 conferences. Each conference gets 4 playoff teams. The first two rounds are only conference opponents. I believe this will lead to to more hated/bloody/awesome rivalries. Sure it means less playoff series against teams you rarely play, but because you see the same teams year after year, heated rivalries generate money. Then after the first two rounds the conference champs are resead 1-4. So instead of having East-West champs playing for the cup, you can possibly see a Detroit-Colorado cup, or a Boston-Pittsburg cup. I think it makes for more interesting Stanley Cups, because now teams that always played in the early rounds can know see each other for the Cup. Like I said earlier, I absolutely love. Is this perfect for Detroit, no; but I think its the best for the NHL overall. I hope NHL gets bigger than it is. People dont realize it, but the NHL playoffs are more minute by minute exciting than all of the other sports, and Im a football guy.

For those in the know, I would have dreamed for an all Original 6 conference. That would generate alot of money, but not for the other 24.

NHL Realignment, A Primer: Four Conferences, Revamped Playoffs Among The Change -
NHL Realignment, A Primer: Four Conferences, Revamped Playoffs Among The Change

NHL realignment is here, and there's a ton of news flying around. Let's break down all the information as easily as we can, first with a look at which teams fall where.

Names of the new conferences have yet to be decided, and there's no word if they could go back to the old Patrick, Adams, Norris and Smythe names.

IMBALANCE: The first thing you notice is the unbalance between the Eastern half of the league and the Western half. Keep in mind that there's no such thing as the Eastern Conference and Western Conference any longer, so that's not really of too much concern. The top four teams in each conference will make the postseason.

Gary Bettman's argument against the concern that it'll be easier to make the playoffs if you're in one of the Eastern groupings is that the bottom seedings are inconsequential. Basic mathematics seem to sit counter to that point, but we'll let you be the judge of if you care about that.

PHOENIX SITUATION: Besides, this new format might not even make it to the beginning of the 2012-13 season. There's still plenty of uncertainty revolving the Phoenix Coyotes, and it's definitely possible that the team is playing in a different city come next season. This seems to create a bit of a contingency plan for the NHL.

Should Phoenix move East to Quebec City, it's a quick swap to "Conference 2". If they were to move to Kansas City or Seattle or another Western locale, Detroit or Columbus could be shifted to "Conference 1" or "Conference 2."

Again, though, balance between the East and the West doesn't really matter at this point considering there's no such thing as the East and the West.

And, well.... it does sort of lend itself to potential expansion to 32 teams, doesn't it? /cart-before-the-horse

SCHEDULE CHANGES: There will be a home-and-home held between each team in the league, meaning that each team will play in each league city every single season. That helps travel concerns for the West to an extent, but the reality is that teams in the West are just separated by more distance and will have to travel more, no matter the alignment.

The rest of the games will be filled inside of your own conference.

If your team is in a seven-team conference, they will play 36 games inside of their conference, or six games against each team. In eight-team conferences, teams will play at least five but potentially six games against each their intra-conference foes.

PLAYOFFS: The big question is how the playoffs will work. According to Bettman, here's how things will go:

■As we mentioned, the top four teams in each conference will advance to the postseason.
■From that point, the first two rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs will be intra-conference.
■There will be four conference champions, each of whom will advance to a final four.
■The four teams will likely be reseeded based on regular season results, with No. 1 playing No. 4 and No. 2 playing No. 3. The winners will meet in the Stanley Cup Final. It's also possible that the two eight-team conferences (or, the East) will meet and that the two seven-team conferences (the West) will meet, with the winner playing in the Final. Bettman said the general managers will decide this.
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Old 12-06-2011, 02:59 PM   #2
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Yup, I love it too, my only beef is taking Tampa and putting them with Boston, Montreal, Ottowa....they should stay with Carolina, pretty good rivalry there but not anymore I guess...

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