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05-14-2012, 03:02 PM
Mory Schneideur*
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Originally Posted by coolboarder View Post
What if there is no 2 conference, east/west and NHL adapts 4 conferences? The problem is that there are central teams which is more closer to the eastern teams than the western teams. The wildcard system looks good only if it punishes the wildcard winner more as distance is too great or failure to secure the top 4 but it does extend their season that they do not deserve as a wildcard winner. If there is 2 conferences then it should be 9th place with more points trying for the playoff game with a wildcard against the 8th place. You said that 4 possible wildcard games, I disagreed because the way I looked, there are two possible wildcard games with 4 conferences setup and if you apply the 2 conferences system then you get only one possible wildcard system. It does not make sense to try to keep 2 western teams and 2 eastern teams for the duration of the playoffs with the 4 conference format because there is no east/west in the 4 conference set-up. With only 2 home-game in the 7-game series for the wildcard is punishment enough with additional to a road game for 5th place (4-conference) or 9th place in conference (east/west conference) due to their failure to exceed their top 4 or top 8, whatever you choose to apply the reason for punishment. If the 4th place team beat the 5th place (8-9) in the wildcard game then no punishment because it is not considered a wildcard team since it's in own conference and normal 2-2-1-1-1 format will apply.

The NHL is trying to implement the conference-based playoff system with 4 conference with NHLPA nixed the format for CBA negotiation.

If you try to apply with the current two conference, east/west, to the wildcard format that you talked about, it is 8-9 depends on the point seeding. If both conference has higher 8th seeded than 9th seed then no wildcard game. Should somehow the 9th place team wins the wildcard game then I would impose the 2-2-3 format to punish the 9th place wildcard winner for the first 3 rounds of the playoffs. Should this same wildcard emerges as a survivor of the punishment then normal 2-2-1-1-1 applies for the SCF.

If we apply the current format for wildcard in this year's standing, no wildcard playoff game is necessary because both conference has fulfilled their requirements and 9th place is not better than 8th in opposite conference. If we use 2010-2011 season, we might potentially see Dallas playing the road game at New York for a chance to win a wildcard game. Dallas finished 95 points and New York finished 93 points but New York gets its home ice for the wild card game. Calgary is out of playoffs because even though Calgary is higher than New York in 10th place and Dallas is better than Calgary so gets its opportunity to steal the thunder at the wildcard on the road. Should Dallas wins its wildcard game, Dallas will have to be on the road for the rest of the playoff with 2-2-3 format. Meaning, Dallas must play 5 road games for the first round of the playoff against Washington for the 2011 playoff as their punishment.

There is a reason for punishment: it is not fair for New York finished 8th place and Dallas gets its extra gate revenue while New York who lost the wildcard gets its wildcard revenue but missed out its first round gate revenue so punishes Dallas with maximum of two home game during the series against Washington. Also it saves the travel mileage between two cities. I would also propose that whatever New York missed out, Dallas earned must give New York one home gate revenue to New York then afterward, Dallas can keep their profits for themselves.

For the wildcard playoff to work properly, for east/west, only one wild card game but if NHL decides to go with 4 conference game, then only 2 potentially wildcard is possible. In some year, there can be no wildcard because all conference 4th place finished higher than the 5th place from other conference. I prefer top 4 teams in each conference (4 conference format) or top 8 teams (current East/West conference format) automatically with one exemption, either, 5th or 9th place from other conference who has higher point standing than the last playoff spot get an opportunity to get in the playoff using the wildcard system. No top 2 or top 3 division thing, just top 4 or top 8, whatever conference format you choose.
You're correct that there is no east/west for the 4 conferences, but the way they are split up you can pair the conferences in a sense for the first two rounds as east/west for travel purposes.

I understand what ur saying about central teams being closer to the east, but there is nothing we can do about geography & traditionally those teams "play in the west" so it would make more sense for a wild card team to travel within its east/west zone than from LA to NY.

Also you might be right about the 4 games, might be 2 wild card games max, I'll have to look into that.

Perhaps one way to punish the wild card team & to make it better for the 1 seed in its own conference is to go to a 3-2-2 format, to reduce travel and give the 1st seed a real good home advantage and reward for being the regular season conference champion.

Great ideas btw though & great to see people open to discussion.

Just for arguments sake, imagine LA this year coming up as a Wild Card, spanking the Central Conference and going to the SCF... And playing PHX or VAN in the finals...What a story! People who argue X division/conference is superior because teams have more points would be exposed as fools if a Wild Card walked in and spanked another conference. Would be fun for the game! Bragging rights would be cool too.

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