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01-27-2013, 05:15 PM
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I think the great thing about the current setup is the fact that you have divisional rivalries AND conference rivalries. NYR-NJD, PIT-PHI, DET-CHI, EDM-CAL... yea, all obvious and would be retained with the proposed 4 conference realignment, but without the conference playoff format you are missing out on DET-COL, WSH-PIT, PHI-BOS, VAN-CHI, etc. Quite frankly, I'm against the idea of the Rangers only playing Boston or Montreal only twice in a season. So we pick up a game against the West. So what? I'd much rather play established conference rivals 4 times a year than pick up a game against Calgary.

And to those saying that division are pointless without divisional playoffs: every other of the Big 4 has divisions without a strict divisional playoff round. Plus, the division are there to;

1. promote rivalries


2. give the winner a top 3 seed in the conference and a guaranteed home-ice advantage playoff round.

I fully expect Phoenix to pack up and head to Quebec, and the only format I can come up with that really works is this.

Atlantic - NYR, NYI, PIT, NJD, PHI
You really can't split these 5 up. PIT-PHI and NYR-NJD-NYI are the really big ones that you can't break, but I'm also of the opinion that NYR-PHI and NJD-PHI are too important to the league to be losing any of the games. NYI-PHI would also be good if the Isles got better, and NYR-PIT is a pretty good rivalry, as well.
Northeast - BUF, BOS, MON, QUE, OTT
Only place for Quebec to go.
Southeast - WAS, CLB, CAR, TB, FLA
Makes sense.

Central - DET, TOR, CHI, STL, NSH
Keeps the DET-CHI rivalry intact and reintroduces the Leafs to their old Norris rivals.
Northwest - WIN, EDM, CAL, COL, MIN
Prevents stranding COL or MIN in an all-Canadian division and Winnipeg should be very excited.
Pacific - VAN, DAL, LAK, ANA, SJS
Yeah, Dallas gets left in the Pacific... but in reality there's no where for them to go without throwing the entire league out of whack. Vancouver has had some battles with SJS and LAK, and they'll retain conference rivalries with the Oilers and Flames, so it shouldn't make too much of a difference to them. It's not like attendance will suffer.

Last edited by AWall THE CLAW: 01-27-2013 at 05:21 PM.
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