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11-24-2003, 09:10 AM
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Bring back regional picks !

It's been on my mind for a while and I think regional picks should be included in the next CBA (or wherever it should be included). In my mind, this would be a savior for small market teams ... Imagine this: Every year, the first round of the draft would have every team pick a player based on where they operate. Obviously, no regions can overlap and everybody will pick the best touted prospect from it...

In my mind, the benefits are undeniable. What can help a team more than having a local hero? In a way, this system rewards teams that are able to promote hockey in the locality where they are established. If they are able to create enough interest, than good players will stem from that region and the team will reap it's benefits. The other way around is to go were there is a lot of money but few interest ... people with money can always buy their stars from the smaller markets ... But this system helps balance everything out ... Obviously some people will think that this gives an unfair advantage to Canadian teams, but with the influx of players from the NCAA in the past years, this could very well help some American teams. If Fleury is supposed to save the Pens, imagine how better it would be if he actually was a Pittsburgh native ... Besides, we're only talking about one round, not the whole draft ... Euro players would still be available to every team.

If the NHL was to create such a system, we would truely be unique compared to other pro team sports. This could be very highly beneficial for hockey and the future of our sport. Food for thoughts...

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