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02-27-2013, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by KingsFan7824 View Post
That's one of the reasons Toronto was in the East instead of Columbus. Even though Toronto, like Detroit, could survive quite well in the West. Leaf fans aren't going anywhere. They're just as, if not more dedicated to their team than Detroit fans.

If it was easy, it would be done already. The league would've figured out something better in 1998 if it was easy. It's certainly not rocket science, but it's also not simple.
Originally Posted by patnyrnyg View Post
Columbus wasn't in the league in 1998. Atlanta came in 99, and the Southeast only had 4 teams so it was an easy addition. Minnesota and Columbus entered the league in 2000. The Central had 4 teams as did the Northwest, so it just made sense to move them into their divisions.
Think about exactly where we are today, with a firm proposal in hand that will be voted on by both the NHLPA and the NHL BoG...

In June 1997, when the league added the four teams, the proposal in hand was similar to the structure we've had for the past fifteen years. The only difference is that Columbus was to be placed in the Northeast until either 2004 or until they made the playoffs, and Toronto would have stayed in the Central. MLSE President Ken Dryden lobbied really hard and in December 1997, when the realignment vote came, the Leafs were switched at that moment for Columbus.

So keep in mind that although the four teams that were added in 1997 over the course of three years, the alignment for those teams was already set in stone as of December 1997.

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