Hockey Night in Canada Report: NHL's 4-Division Realignment Gaining Steam
Last night on Hockey Night in Canada, a report surfaced that a realignment plan that had been previously dismissed is now gaining a lot of traction amongst the NHL owners.
A video of the report can be seen here.
Completely realigned, the divisions would look like this:
Another thing that was also noted was that teams would play a home-and-home versus every team outside their division, and the rest of their games would be played within their own division.
About a month ago, I wrote an article with a realignment plan that nearly mirrors this one. The plans only contain a few minor changes, biggest of all being that the NHL's plan doesn't have Pittsburgh in the same division as Washington and Philadelphia.
Who should be moved to the Eastern Conference?
I like the plan of having a home-and-home against every out of division team; however, I believe that extra games should be given for rivalries like Detroit vs. Toronto or Chicago vs. Vancouver.
One discussion that was never mentioned was how playoff seeding will work. I am under the opinion that the best plan would be to seed the teams No. 1 through 16 in the playoffs, allowing for different matchups.
In order to pass, this division realignment must be voted in by 20 of the NHL's 30 owners. Realistically, that may be tough to pass, but with an even amount of travel for every team and most division rivalries kept intact, it is very possible for the vote to pass.
Jordan Matthews is a fan of the NHL and the Detroit Red Wings. For more hockey coverage you can follow him on Twitter.
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