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12-31-2012, 11:15 PM
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Originally Posted by saffronleaf View Post
The NHL should be able to sustain 32 markets soon, although there would have to be considerable relocation of current franchises.

I think that, overall, the southern expansion is a good idea for the growth of the game. However, the way it was executed was poor -- it was more guided by expansion fees than actually growing the game in a region where it is not usually played. As such, I think there needs to be a bit of a retreat from the South; the NHL should use its resources to ensure the survival of the approximately 50%+ southern teams that are relatively successful or have hopes of succeeding. Moreover, this will enable the NHL to get a foothold in the Pacific NorthWest, a region it has severely neglected.

I would relocate Anaheim, Phoenix, Carolina, and Florida to Portland, Quebec City, Seattle, and Hamilton. This would leave five sun-belt teams; San Jose, Los Angeles, Dallas, Nashville, and Tampa. I would also expand to Omaha and Salt Lake City.

I would hope for a 32 NHL league with a 4-conference, 8-division set up.

Atlantic Conference
NorthEast Division
Boston Bruins
New York Rangers
New York Islanders
New Jersey Devils

SouthEast Division
Philadelphia Flyers
Pittsburgh Penguins
Washington Capitals
Tampa Bay Lightning

Northern Conference
Eastern Division
Toronto Maple Leafs
Ottawa Senators
Montreal Canadiens
Quebec Nordiques

Central Division
Detroit Red Wings
Columbus Blue Jackets
Buffalo Sabres
Hamilton (Tigers?)

MidWestern Conference
Upper MidWest Division
Chicago Blackhawks
Minnesota Wild
Winnipeg Jets

Lower Midwest Division
St. Louis Blues
Colorado Avalanche
Nashville Predators
Dallas Stars

Western Conference
NorthWestern Division
Edmonton Oilers
Calgary Flames
Vancouver Canucks

SouthWestern Division
Salt Lake City
San Jose Sharks
Los Angeles Kings
Omaha couldn't support an AHL team. SLC may be shaky also. I would re-align your divisions. Portland and Seattle should be in the same divison. I would put the Wild and the Blackhawks with Nashville and St Louis.

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