League wants realignment decision by December

The first formal discussions regarding realignment for the 2012-13 season were held Tuesday at the NHL Board of Governors meeting. However, the only consensus reached by the time the meeting broke in the early afetrnoon was that a decision on how the League will be realigned for next season needs to be reached by December in order for the scheduling process to begin on time.

The League must adopt some form of realignment because Winnipeg, which will play the upcoming season in the Southeast Division of the Eastern Conference, has been assured of a spot in the Western Conference for the 2012-13 season. Therefore, it’s possible that the Jets’ move could create a ripple effect by forcing more teams to move or the League to blow up the current system and re-draw it for 2012-13.“Obviously we have to make arrangements to move Winnipeg west, and we had an opportunity to explore the issues,” Commissioner Gary Bettman told NHL.com. “No conclusions were reached, but it’s something I’m hopeful we can resolve at the December meeting.”

Bettman described the tone of the discussions as “very constructive and very positive.” A number of realignment scenarios were laid out in front of the governors, including ideas to keep the current six-division format or move into a four-conference format, featuring two conferences of eight teams and two conferences of seven teams.

Completely overhauling the current system into a four-conference system would obviously require the League to change the playoff format as well.

http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=589117


56 Responses to League wants realignment decision by December

  1. mojo19 says:

    Anyone else pumped that the system might change?

    I dont know about this whole 4 conference thing. How would that work? But anyways, cool idea.

    I would go with this:

    NORTH EAST
    Detroit
    Buffalo
    Toronto
    Montreal
    Ottawa
    Boston
    Philadelphia
    Pittsburgh

    SOUTH EAST
    Carolina
    Tampa Bay
    Florida
    New York
    Washington
    Long Island
    New Jersey

    NORTH WEST
    Columbus
    St.Louis
    Chicago
    Minnesota
    Winnepeg
    Edmonton
    Calgary
    Vancouver

    SOUTH WEST
    Dallas
    Los Angelas
    Anaheim
    Phoenix
    Colorado
    San Jose
    *Nashville (wanted them in the SE but someone has to play out West. So many teams are on the East side)

  2. mojo19 says:

    Then if, they do switch to this format, I wonder if you would go with top 4 teams in each division make the playoffs? Then 2nd round you play to win your division, then the 4 divisional winners re-seed and the top seed plays 4, 3 vs 2. And that's your semi's…

  3. mapleleafsfan says:

    It'd be rough trying to make the playoffs in our division.

  4. mojo19 says:

    haha, healthy Crosby and Malkin , Philly's team comes into their own in the next year or so. Throw Detroit into the mix, and then you still have Boston, Buffalo…. ya would be *****ing tough.

    I heard Bob MacKenzie today on TSN radio say that they actually discussed an all Canadian divisino. Travel isn't an issue with the re-alignment because they're also expected to introduce more balanced schedules.

    A problem with that is that if you're fighting against your own division/conference only for playoff spots, then it would make sense to have more games against them. One suggestion I have to cut back on travel would be to have more home and homes or maybe even 2 games in 1 city on 1 trip. Like the Leafs fly into Edmonton and play back to back games Monday and Wednesday on the road. It would kind of be like baseball.

  5. reinjosh says:
    Interesting idea. Nashville gets mega screwed in that one, playing against almost all coast teams. I say shift New York to the North East, Detroit to the North West, Minnesota or St Louis to the South West and Nashville to the South East. 
    There are so many different ways this could go. I'm very interested to see how they do this. Specifically if they decide to stick with divisions of some sort (4, 5 whatever), I'm interested to see which of Columbus, Detroit or Nashville they choose to shift East. What plays into that discussion? Politics? Money? Team stability? Favor? Status (Because Detroit is Original 6 do they get first shot)?
  6. Leafs_Wallace says:

    I'd prefer a system where all Canadian teams could make the playoffs.  An all Canadian division feels less organic, where certain teams are artificially propped up. 

    It's a bit of over kill, we get Canadian markets shoved down our throat enough has it is.

  7. mojo19 says:

    To me, if they wanted to do the least shuffling, just move Winnepeg into the Central, and Nashville into the South East. Its a quick fix and makes a lot of sense geographically.

  8. mojo19 says:

    Also I wanna see a division like this:

    Toronto
    Ottawa
    Long Island
    Winnipeg
    Edmonton
    Florida
    Columbus

    Then do whatever you want for the other 3 divisions.

  9. MystifoLeafs says:

    So were making it easier for Toronto to make the playoffs? I mean the only other team I would be really scared of in that would be NYI if they got amazing goaltending.

  10. reinjosh says:

    Haha I totally didn't get what he was getting at. I was thinking that had to be the mot random collection of teams for a division. 

  11. mojo19 says:

    Ya, but I want this division to go into effect this year before Edmonton's young guys start maturing. haha

  12. Boston_Bruins says:

    Haha the Northeast would be the only division worth watching.

    I don't know how they're going to do it, but pretty much anyway you look at it some team is going to get screwed over with travel. Detroit's the team that's *****ing now, but it'll just be another team after they come to the East.

    If it were up to me I'd keep the Northeast, Atlantic and Pacific the same, move Winnipeg to the Northwest, Minnesota to the Central, and Nashville to the Southeast.

    Here's what I'm predicting if they stay with six divisions (based on the Wild GM saying that the Wild were moving to the Central with the Jets to join Chicago, Nashville and Dallas, which makes absolutely no sense, but whatever):

    Northwest: VAN, CGY, EDM, COL, STL/CLB
    Central: MIN, WPG, CHI, DAL, NSH
    Southwest: SJS, LAK, ANA, PHX, STL/CLB

    Northeast: DET, TOR, MTL, OTT, BUF
    Atlantic: BOS, NYR, NYI, NJD, PHI
    Southeast: FLA, TBL, CAR, PIT, WSH

    Pretty screwed up, especially for the Blues and Jackets.

  13. Boston_Bruins says:

    Lol just yank them out and put them in another division when they do.

  14. Kramer says:

    They should add a Mexican conference. Teams in Guadalajara, Tijuana, Baja, Chihuahua, and Los Tachos.

  15. reinjosh says:

    Well I think the decision they make is based on whether or not they want to give it to the Red Wings or give it to a team that has more of a financial need to take the move.

  16. Leafs_Wallace says:

    If Kardi-Bozak-Armstrong can emerge as Kulemin-Garbovski-MacAuthur junior and NJ tanks into a rebuild after Brodeur annouces retirement the stars would be in alignment for us to pursue Parise (say two first and Colborne) and take a run.

    I'm thinking that is best case scenario.

  17. hockey_lover says:

    They have to make the playoffs in order to get an easy ride tho ..

    OHHH. I kid, I kid. I had to 🙂   

  18. mojo19 says:

    That would be sicck. I think this Bozak line might actually be pretty good. And like I've been saying for a while, they've scrapped the top 6/bottom 6 formula where you need all checkers on that 3rd line. Ron Wilson was stressing the importance of getting scoring from the third line.

  19. Leafs_Wallace says:

    The only way at top six bottom six works is if you added 1st line players.

  20. palindrom says:

    Since i lost all my money on sports betting, i had no choice but to bet my wife, kids and house on tonight TOR Game.

    I won it!!!!!

    Can you imagine? i have now 3 wife. 8 kids and 2 houses!!

  21. Kramer says:

    If Los Tachos gets a team, I wanna see them called the Los Tachos Tortillas.

  22. Kramer says:

    I didn't bet on the game and I don't have any wives but I impregnated two women last year.

  23. LeafsFTW17 says:

    Rosehill is such a beaut. Sticking up for teamates and making one of the toughest fighters in the league bleed.  Ever since last years pre-season he was one of my favorites, I hope he makes the team.
    ALSO, how BS was that instigating call?? If you watch the replay Shelley drops the gloves first.  I hope he gets a suspension on that hit, Boyce didn't have the puck and Shelley didn't just tap him, he put all his weight into him.

  24. TheLeafNation91 says:

    Just Edmonton? In 2-3 years down the road…I would not even want to be in a division with half of those teams.

  25. TheLeafNation91 says:

    I hate this Detroit in the East fascination.

    They have some great rivalries in the West…Chicago, St. Louis, Nashville, Vancouver, Colorado, etc.

    Why move them to the East to just excite Leaf fans of creating a rivalry that is already dead?

    Stupid.

  26. TheLeafNation91 says:

    How about the simplest and smartes re-alignment.

    SouthEast

    Nashville
    Florida
    Tampa Bay
    Carolina
    Washington

    Central

    Winnipeg
    Chicago
    St. Louis
    Detroit
    Chicago

    Why????

    Well, Winnipeg is in the central zone for one. The times would match up with the other teams in this area.

    Also, Nashville is in the SE United States. Have no idea why their in the central as it is.

    I think its stupid to have impossible re-alignements so Detroit will be with toronto again and Winnipeg is with the Canadian teams in the West.

  27. Leafs_Wallace says:

    How exactly would a four conference system work? Would you play the first two playoff round within your division like the old Campbells and Wales system?  That would be great.

  28. leafy says:

    Plus he won the fight!

    I agree that instigator call was b.s. It was a "formula" call by the ref. He's thinking, well there's a dirty hit, oh now there's a fight, gotta be an instigator call right here. Drives me nuts when refs do that.

  29. leafy says:

    Now that's more like it. I don't like the idea of having Detroit in the same division. It's not in our best interest.

  30. mojo19 says:

    Ya, when you've got MacDonald and Selanne who both put up over 90 pts on one line, and then Getzlaf and Perry on another line, you can fill out the rest of the team with grinders and Rob Niedermayer, Sami Pahlsson etc. But we're gonna need more depth scoring for sure.

  31. mojo19 says:

    Ya I said this would make the most sense geographicly. That's the easiest switch to make too. Only have to move two teams.

    But actually, I really hope they do switch to the 4 different conferences. What I read was that Bettman proposed it, and you would play the first two rounds within your division then the 4 division winners would re-seed and pay a semi and a final.

  32. TheLeafNation91 says:

    I don't like that.

    I like number 8 playing number 1 because upsets always seem to happen in the NHL because the level of competition in the league these days are pretty even.

  33. reinjosh says:

    I think they shot the idea down pretty fast, at least according to reports. 

    I agree with Wallace. I think the NHL and most Canadian fans would prefer a system where all the Canadian teams could at the very least face a shot at making the playoffs all at the same time.
    Not to mention that the League would be nuts to split old rivalries like Montreal-Boston, geographic rivalries like Toronto-Boston or developing rivalries like Vancouver-Chicago. 
    Granted it would be pretty awesome seeing more Canadian only games. 
  34. reinjosh says:

    I think they shot the idea down pretty fast, at least according to reports. 

    I agree with Wallace. I think the NHL and most Canadian fans would prefer a system where all the Canadian teams could at the very least face a shot at making the playoffs all at the same time.
    Not to mention that the League would be nuts to split old rivalries like Montreal-Boston, geographic rivalries like Toronto-Boston or developing rivalries like Vancouver-Chicago. 
    Granted it would be pretty awesome seeing more Canadian only games. 
  35. reinjosh says:

    I agree completely. Move a team East that makes things interesting. Like Columbus. They need the money and they have a team that has enough potential to be a playoff team in the East. 

  36. TheOnlyIslesFan says:

    Also have to take in account that Phoenix may or may not be a factor in realignment.

    Though the way this thing has dragged on nearly four years now I guess that they won't.
  37. TheOnlyIslesFan says:

    Also I'm kinda shocked that Streit was named Captain yesterday over Tavares,Okposo or even Rolston.

  38. mojo19 says:

    Ya exactly, 2 rounds to determine division winners, then you have 4 teams left and you re-seed.

    Also check out these proposed divsions, I think everyone could get on board with this – The NY teams and Jersey would move into the NE division. Pittsburgh, Philly, and Nashville would move into the South. The Central would absorb Dallas, Minnesota, and Winnepeg. And the rest of the North West would join the Pacific division –

    EAST –
    Boston
    Buffalo
    Toronto
    Montreal
    Ottawa
    New York
    Long Island
    New Jersey

    South –
    Pittsburgh
    Philly
    Washington
    Carolina
    Florida
    Tampa Bay
    Nashville

    Mid West –
    Detroit
    Columbus
    Chicago
    St.Louis
    Dallas
    Minnesota
    Winnepeg

    Pacific –
    Edmonton
    Calgary
    Colorado
    Vancouver
    Phoenix
    Anaheim
    San Jose
    Los Angelas

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/blog/puck_daddy/post/NHL-realignment-plan-Improving-or-meddling-with?urn=nhl-wp8068

  39. mojo19 says:

    Rosehil has made the team out of camp two years in a row and hasnt last to the end of October either year. I'm hoping he can stick this year too. Always liked the way he plays.

  40. mojo19 says:

    4 vs 1 would be a big upset now…. it woud just be different. Plus you'd have 4 #1 seeds, so there would be lots of different shit going on.

    Think about this division

    1.Van
    2. LA
    3. SJ
    4. Ana
    ……..
    5. Phx
    6. Cal
    7. Col
    8. Edm

    Those woud be some pretty sweet playoff match ups. And it would also allow for a more balanced reguar season schedule without jeopordizing Bettman's goal of developing natural rivalries, since teams woud always be facing the same few opponents in the playoffs every year.

  41. mojo19 says:

    I actually thought Mark Streit was a great choice. The reason is this – He is the only really good player on that team who is in his prime. Rolston is still good but he's on his last leg and they've had that kind of band-aid captain for so long, with Guerin passing the C onto Weight. Tavares or Okposo wouldn't have been a bad choice and would've fit in with what most of the league was doing, but they didn't wanna go with a young guy yet, they wanted to go with a guy who is in his prime, and that can only be Streit on that roster. I say good choice.

  42. reinjosh says:

    Yeah I agree. Not sure Tavares or Okposo would have been the right choice. They are the future but neither is ready to be a leader in my opinion. Tavares I'm not sure should even be captain. I think he will do better just being the big man on offense and not the leader. Who knows though, maybe he's got more leadership than I give him credit for. 

  43. blaze says:

    Ya great scrap for Rosie. Orr – Rosehill is a great one two punch, espcially with Orr's future uncertain. I love how Rosehill is a lefty but can swing both, makes for some entertaining fights.

  44. mojo19 says:

    Man, if Rosehill or Brown could switch over to play center that could be a badass line with Orr.

  45. realistic_leafs_fan says:

    Bozak is not a forth line centre and shouldn't be cast there.

    Say Lombardi is healthy.

    I like  Armstrong-Bozak-Lombardi as the third line.

  46. reinjosh says:

    I'm not really a fan. I'd prefer Kadri-Bozak-Armstrong personally. Its got a more offensive tinge to it and I like the chemistry that Kadri and Bozak are displaying. Lombardi complicates things far to much. Ugh. 

    If we trade MacArthur, things are made easier. Kadri shifts up, Lmobardi takes third line spot and the lines are set. 
    I'm not a fan of Lombardi. I love getting Franson with him though. Lombardi is just…frustrating to have on ones team. He's fast but he's often to fast for his own good, being to far ahead of the play or being faster than his hands. He sort of complicates everything too but I suppose depth is better than dearth. 
  47. JoelLeafs says:

    Anyone else notice this:

    4 conferences mean 2 will have one less team. If the league were to, say, add two teams, they would have a nice balances conferences.
    Obviously not the time for league expansion (too many teams need cities, IMO) but try telling that to Buttman and his army of yes-men. 
  48. mojo19 says:

    I think you're right. Eventually it would switch to a 32 team league. Or if they wanna do something actually productive…. retraction. Take away two teams (I vote Ottawa and Florida, two bittch franchises)

  49. mojo19 says:

    I dunno, he had that one year where he was really producing well, even got dealt for, a then highly sought after Oli Jokinen.

    A lot of the time when players come into the year after missing the beginning they are not 100% on their game right away (ie Lupul last year with the Ducks). I wouldn't mind seeing Lombardi's sheer speed in an energy forechecking role. Doesn't he feel like a perfect fit for a line with Mike Brown? And on top of that, if Bozak does start struggling, at least we have another option of someone who can step in, we won't have to rely on throwing players like Boyce and Crabb onto our shuffling 2nd/3rd lines like we did last year.

    I don't think its frustrating having Lombardi on the team, we always need the depth.

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