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Realignment: Did the CBA address this?

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Old
01-27-2013, 12:51 PM
  #151
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Originally Posted by MNNumbers View Post
Shockmaster - I guess I should admit that I am really seeing this whole issue on 2 levels:

1) What makes sense geographically. Which would be: Van in the Pacific, and a NW division like you have established.

2) What might happen based on what teams want. And, This is different from what makes sense geographically. What teams want is: Vancouver wants Calgary and Edmonton. In fact, all 3 of those want each other. So, it's close to impossible to put Vancouver alone in the Pacific. Winnipeg wants Minnesota. Minnesota likes that, but also wants Chicago (I am from St Paul. We remember fondly battles with the Hawks). The way you get that is: 4 divisions. The Central one is Winn, Minn, Chi, Det, StL, etc.

I hope that makes sense.
I'm seeing it on two levels too. I think people will regret the NHL's proposed divisional format after 3 or 4 seasons for reasons I stated in previous posts. There will be a lot of uneven play in the regular season and team deserving to make the playoffs won't make it because they finished 5th in a tougher division/conference. Do you think Tampa Bay and Florida want to play with Northeastern teams? Do you think the New York Rangers like being the only original six team in their conference? There's more than one side to your argument.

I think the current format works best, it just needs some shuffling.

Obviously, Vancouver wouldn't like being separated from the Alberta teams, but if it prevents Minnesota and Dallas from having to travel two time zones to play divisional foes then I think that's better for the league. They'll still get to play the Alberta teams four times a year, and being in a division with San Jose certainly wouldn't be boring.

Detroit wouldn't like Columbus going to the eastern conference before they do, but a) maybe Bettman shouldn't make promises he doesn't have the final say on, and b) teams in the west will fight hard to keep Detroit. Granted, Columbus isn't in the southeastern US, but neither is Washington DC.

So if the two biggest problems with my idea is that Vancouver is mad it'll play CGY and EDM four times instead of six and that Detroit is mad Columbus goes east first, then I think that's something the NHL could live with.

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01-27-2013, 01:01 PM
  #152
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This is a fun discussion.

Can we start over from a different angle??

Let's say Phoenix moves to Quebec. Now what? If you try to keep 6 divisions, how do you do the west?

Pac: Van, SJ, LA, Ana and ???
NW or Mountain: Cal, Edm, Col(unless Col goes to the Pac), ???, ??? Big problem here. Colorado likely has to fill the Pacific. Now you need 3 teams here. Winnipeg and Minnesota are easy choices. Who is next???
Central: Assuming Winn and Minn are in the Mountain. Chi, StL, Nash, Dal, ???, ??? I put 2 ??? because one of these guys has to fill the Mountain Division.

This seems a big conundrum, at least to me. I think the east would go easily. Although, if Detroit isn't in Central, then it's a big fight there, too.

So, long term, it seems if PHX goes to QUE, then the 6 division arrangement has problems.

If PHX stays, or moves to SEA, it's easier, but you still end up with the same set of fights that the BoG went through last year. No consensus.

We can hypothesize all day, but it's not an easy answer.

So, in a way, I think the league is waiting on PHX to really ask this question.

Any one else think that, too?

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01-27-2013, 01:03 PM
  #153
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schroedingers Cat View Post
Atlantic: NYR\NJD\NYI\PIT\PHI\WSH\BOS
NE: BOS\BUF\OTT\TOR\MON\DET\NSH\CBS
S: DAL\PHX\FLO\TB\STL\CHI\MIN
PAC: VAN\SJ\LA\ANA\EDM\CAL\COL\WPG

Those are 4 time zone balanced divisions
Disagree big time.

Atlantic - ET only
NE - ET, CT
S - ET, CT, and Arizona (they don't do Daylight Savings Time, so could be 1-3 hours different that rest of grouping)
PAC: CT, MT, PT

Swap Winnipeg (CT) and Phoenix (AZT), and you're down to two time zones max per grouping.

That also leaves PAC without an original 6 team.

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01-27-2013, 01:14 PM
  #154
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Originally Posted by MNNumbers View Post
This is a fun discussion.

Can we start over from a different angle??

Let's say Phoenix moves to Quebec. Now what? If you try to keep 6 divisions, how do you do the west?

Pac: Van, SJ, LA, Ana and ???
NW or Mountain: Cal, Edm, Col(unless Col goes to the Pac), ???, ??? Big problem here. Colorado likely has to fill the Pacific. Now you need 3 teams here. Winnipeg and Minnesota are easy choices. Who is next???
Central: Assuming Winn and Minn are in the Mountain. Chi, StL, Nash, Dal, ???, ??? I put 2 ??? because one of these guys has to fill the Mountain Division.

This seems a big conundrum, at least to me. I think the east would go easily. Although, if Detroit isn't in Central, then it's a big fight there, too.

So, long term, it seems if PHX goes to QUE, then the 6 division arrangement has problems.

If PHX stays, or moves to SEA, it's easier, but you still end up with the same set of fights that the BoG went through last year. No consensus.

We can hypothesize all day, but it's not an easy answer.

So, in a way, I think the league is waiting on PHX to really ask this question.

Any one else think that, too?
One really big hurdle is that in reality the NHL needs to cut the Atlantic division in half, but they won't. They don't want to separate Pittsburgh and Philly from the three NY teams. Really, a four conference/division setup should look like this:

Division A: Boston, Buffalo, Montreal, New Jersey, NY Islanders, NY Rangers, Ottawa, Toronto

Division B: Carolina, Columbus, Florida, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Washington

Division C: Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Minnesota, Nashville, St. Louis, Winnipeg

Division D: Anaheim, Calgary, Colorado, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Jose, Vancouver

Their would still be an eastern conference and western conference. The 1 and 2 seeds would be the division winners, seeds 3-8 would go by points. Personally I still prefer the current format with six divisions and a little bit of shuffling, but if they absolutely had to go to four divisions, I think this one makes the most sense.

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01-27-2013, 01:40 PM
  #155
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Originally Posted by Shockmaster View Post
One really big hurdle is that in reality the NHL needs to cut the Atlantic division in half, but they won't. They don't want to separate Pittsburgh and Philly from the three NY teams. Really, a four conference/division setup should look like this:

Division A: Boston, Buffalo, Montreal, New Jersey, NY Islanders, NY Rangers, Ottawa, Toronto

Division B: Carolina, Columbus, Florida, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Washington

Division C: Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Minnesota, Nashville, St. Louis, Winnipeg

Division D: Anaheim, Calgary, Colorado, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Jose, Vancouver

Their would still be an eastern conference and western conference. The 1 and 2 seeds would be the division winners, seeds 3-8 would go by points. Personally I still prefer the current format with six divisions and a little bit of shuffling, but if they absolutely had to go to four divisions, I think this one makes the most sense.
And, what do you do if Phoenix moves to Quebec? Now, someone has to move to the Division C, to make 15 teams in each conference. And, Quebec should be in A, so 1 or 2 teams from A have to move out?

What would you do, Shockmaster?

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01-27-2013, 02:06 PM
  #156
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Originally Posted by Shockmaster View Post
Their would still be an eastern conference and western conference. The 1 and 2 seeds would be the division winners, seeds 3-8 would go by points. Personally I still prefer the current format with six divisions and a little bit of shuffling, but if they absolutely had to go to four divisions, I think this one makes the most sense.
Divisional playoffs or bust. Absolutely no point in "divisions" without a divisional playoff format.

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01-27-2013, 02:26 PM
  #157
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Originally Posted by MNNumbers View Post
And, what do you do if Phoenix moves to Quebec? Now, someone has to move to the Division C, to make 15 teams in each conference. And, Quebec should be in A, so 1 or 2 teams from A have to move out?

What would you do, Shockmaster?
I guess I'd move Buffalo to division B. I'm only focusing on the here and now with my opinion and not which teams might or might not relocate and to where they'd go. If that happens, I'll adjust.

Quote:
Divisional playoffs or bust. Absolutely no point in "divisions" without a divisional playoff format.
Why does it have to be one extreme or the other? The NHL currently has divisions with no divisional playoffs. Are you bored come playoff time? Granted, a team playing a hated rival is always good. But does that mean a playoff series will be not worth watching if the two teams aren't rivals?

Sorry, I don't want to see PIT vs PHI or PIT vs NYR or PHI vs NYR or NYR vs NJ every year in the first round. It might make some of you salivate now over the thought of that, but in a few years it'll get repetitive and feel like it's forced. And fans of a team finishing in 5th place in a tougher division will complain about teams with less points getting into the playoffs in a weaker division. Many of you that like the idea now will not like it in a few years if the NHL goes through with it.

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01-27-2013, 04:35 PM
  #158
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http://www.cbssports.com/nhl/blog/ey...-coming-to-nhl

Alan Walsh (player agent) maintains that expansion is coming.

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01-27-2013, 05:06 PM
  #159
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Originally Posted by Shockmaster View Post
But it will still feel too forced. Again, it's the repetition of playing the same 3 or 4 teams over and over. The more I think about it, the more I think divisional play is not the way to go. And I think some of the people who support it now will regret it in a few years.

Also, another problem is when you look at Pittsburgh's division, the 5th placed team in that division is probably better than the 3rd placed team in Boston's division. Yet that 5th placed team won't make the playoff in the new format. That's another reason I think some of the pro-divisional playoff people will regret their opinion in a few years.
But that's exactly what the approximated Divisional Playoff addresses. The Top-8 per Conference makes the Playoffs, which means that if the 5th place team in one Division has a better record than the 4th in the other, then the 5th gets in and the 4th doesn't; thus the approximated Divisional Playoff. 1v5, 2v4, in one Division, 1v3 in the other Division, and 2v3 the crossover matchup. Plus, you need to realize that contrary to the 80s and early 90s, the Divisions will have 8 teams, so that alone means that the chance of repeated matchups each Season will be much reduced. Furthermore, we're talking only the 1st Round of the Playoffs, with the 2nd Round matchups being completely seeded within the Conference, not the Division.

I'd guarantee only the top-2 spots per Division making the Playoffs.

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01-27-2013, 05:21 PM
  #160
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Originally Posted by MNNumbers View Post
More - I like this scheduling format. A couple of questions:

1) What if no expansion? Then?
4 x 14 = 56 (leaves 26 games for an 82 game schedule)
2 x 7 = 14
1 x 8 = 8 (4 extra games left. I guess you could take half of the teams this time, and half in 2 years. That's ok.)
Or, 2 x 8 = 16
1 x 7 = 7 (3 extra games left. What do you with these? I would suggest pick them up with the 7 team division on a rotating scale.)

2) And, probably a bigger question. What happens when Detroit's owner stands up in the BoG meeting and says, "The reason we like the 4 divisions is less travel to the west coast. You haven't changed that at all." Now, personally, I would like a way to answer that. I just don't see a good way.
I'm not worried about there being no expansion; as you said, the scheduling format could be adjusted to fit 30 teams.

The key point for me is this: 2 games against all other Conference teams means too many games against teams that any particular team isn't directly competing with in the Standings; and that goes doubly if you have a 4-Conference (rather than Division) setup. So ok, under that scenario Detroit, in its Central Division, only has to play 2 games against all Western Division (which includes PTZ) teams; but again, that means 46 to 48 games (more than 1/2), in an 82-84 game schedule, played outside of the Conference/Division in which a team is competing to gain a Playoff position. That's far too many, no matter how appealing it might sound to have a Home-and-home against all teams in the League. MLB can do it, but look at the number of games they play in a Season. The schedule format I suggested means only slightly more than 1/4 of a Season's games is played outside the Conference.

That Detroit fix scheduling format couldn't possibly last; scheduling formats get changed quite regularly, and many teams in the League would eventually complain about so many games against teams they don't directly compete with; and the fans will eventually complain as well,... fan preferences change with the wind.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shockmaster View Post
I'm seeing it on two levels too. I think people will regret the NHL's proposed divisional format after 3 or 4 seasons for reasons I stated in previous posts. There will be a lot of uneven play in the regular season and team deserving to make the playoffs won't make it because they finished 5th in a tougher division/conference. Do you think Tampa Bay and Florida want to play with Northeastern teams? Do you think the New York Rangers like being the only original six team in their conference? There's more than one side to your argument.
That uneven play will eventually go away (with expansion), though there is no real reason why it should be to begin with. No, again, as I responded to MNN above, fans and teams alike will get tried of having so many games against teams which their team doesn't directly compete with in the Standings. That's be the big issue sooner rather than later. On top of that, if the League sticks with the idea of a strick top-4 making the Playoffs, then again many fans will ultimately not like an increase in the number of teams with better records not making the Playoffs. But I think the first issue is really the primary one.


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01-27-2013, 05:34 PM
  #161
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As a Canucks fan, I think a pacific division with Vancouver as the only Canadian team is ideal. The Canucks have a huge following in Vancouver so it doesn't matter if they always play Canadian teams or American ones. Travel is the biggest problem and going North/South without time zone changes is easier than going West/East. I hope Winnipeg is not in the same division as Vancouver when all is said and done. It is just too much travel. In an ideal world, a struggling team will soon relocate to Seattle and give Vancouver someone really close to compete with.
I've been gradually seeing more and more Canuck fans, at least on this Board, saying that perhaps a Pacific Division alignment for Vancouver wouldn't be too bad.

Again, to repeat something that I and various others believe to the best case scenario, at least until expansion actually happens...
Stick with the 6 Divisions,
- Put Nashville or Columbus in the SE (I truly think Nashville is the better choice)
- Put Winnipeg in the NW
- Vancouver in the PA
- and Dallas in the CE.

- Columbus stays as an ETZ companion with Detroit.
- Minnesota at least no longer has a 3-Time Zone Division, plus gets a CTZ partner in the NW.
- Vancouver loses the Alberta teams but gets a PTZ Division.
- And Dallas is as happy as a pig in mud.
- As for the SE, Nashville has a good team and will at least add a strong competitive element to the Division.
- And the imbalance of 7 and 8-team Divisions/Conferences is avoided. When expansion happens, then do as they may.


Meant to post this the other day but I got sidetracked. Don't wish it to sidetrack discussion now, so I'm sticking it in here, with color to give it a bit of attention:

It’s quite clear how a 6-Division alignment should be done:

Vancouver, San Jose, Los Angeles, Anaheim, Phoenix
Edmonton, Calgary, Colorado, Winnipeg, Minnesota
Dallas, St Louis, Chicago, Detroit, Columbus

Florida, Tampa Bay, Nashville, Carolina, Washington
Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, New Jersey, NY Rangers, NY Islanders
Buffalo, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Boston



Now, a 4-Division alignment is another matter, obviously:

Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver, San Jose
Los Angeles, Anaheim, Phoenix, Colorado

Florida, Tampa Bay, Carolina, Nashville
Chicago, St Louis, Dallas,

Boston, Ottawa, Montreal,
NY Rangers, NY Islanders, New Jersey, Philadelphia

Toronto, Detroit, Minnesota, Winnipeg
Buffalo, Pittsburgh, Columbus, Washington


Last edited by MoreOrr: 01-27-2013 at 11:07 PM.
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01-27-2013, 06:15 PM
  #162
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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

and

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.


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01-27-2013, 06:28 PM
  #163
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Originally Posted by MNNumbers View Post
And, what do you do if Phoenix moves to Quebec? Now, someone has to move to the Division C, to make 15 teams in each conference. And, Quebec should be in A, so 1 or 2 teams from A have to move out?

What would you do, Shockmaster?
Quote:
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I guess I'd move Buffalo to division B. I'm only focusing on the here and now with my opinion and not which teams might or might not relocate and to where they'd go. If that happens, I'll adjust.
MNN's point is an absolute necessity for consideration. If the League goes against what I call as logic and decides to make a 4-Division alignment, then at least logically it should make room for Quebec City in that alignment.

That means, they can't simply tack the NYC area teams onto the NE Division. In order to do that, there would have to not only be a split of the AT Division but also of the NE Division. Either that, or add two other teams onto the NE and leave the NYC area teams as part of the AT.

Keeping the Northeast intact:
Option 1
Northeast plus Pittsburgh and Philadelphia

Keeping both the Northeast and Atlantic intact:
Option 2
Northeast plus Columbus and Carolina

Separating all the current Divisions in the League:
Option 3
Div A- Washington, Philadephia, New Jersey, Rangers, Islanders, Boston, Montreal, Div B- Ottawa, Toronto, Buffalo, Pittsburgh, Columbus, Detroit, Minnesota, Winnipeg
Div C- Florida, Tampa, Carolina, Nashville, Dallas, St Louis, Chicago,

Hell, there are various other options, if you're able to split up all current Divisions.

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01-27-2013, 06:35 PM
  #164
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Originally Posted by SouthJerseyRanger View Post
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.
Get real! Dallas remaining in the Pacific with Vancouver. Talk about bad going to worse. At least with Phoenix, Dallas played one MTZ team for most of the Season.

IF Phoenix relocates to Quebec City, then both Vancouver and Colorado should go in the Pacific.
Chicago or St Louis joins the NW.

The East, oh boy, that would be fun to see play out, with Quebec City and the League staying with 6 Divisions. I'd get the popcorn ready.
I'd love to discuss your idea of realignment in that case, but I'm not sure such a discussion is worthy of spending time on.

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01-27-2013, 06:39 PM
  #165
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Originally Posted by MoreOrr View Post
Get real! Dallas remaining in the Pacific with Vancouver. Talk about bad going to worse. At least with Phoenix, Dallas played a MTZ team for most of the Season.

IF Phoenix relocates to Quebec City, then both Vancouver and Colorado should go in the Pacific.
Chicago or St Louis joins the NW.

The East, oh boy, that would be fun to see play out, with Quebec City and the League staying with 6 Divisions. I'd get the popcorn ready.
Dallas is really the only team that's out of place, though. Phoenix going to Quebec creates a lot of potential problems. I think my plan corrects a great deal of them except this one. Maybe you put Colorado in the Pacific and Dallas in the "Northwest".

Pacific - COL, SJS, LAK, ANA, VAN
Northwest (although I'd call it the Midwest) - DAL, WIN, MIN, CAL, EDM

Dallas/Minnesota games could be pretty interesting.

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01-27-2013, 07:08 PM
  #166
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Originally Posted by SouthJerseyRanger View Post
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
Listen up, ALL, I think that SouthJerseyRanger may well have stumbled upon the central explanation for last year's 4-Division alignment.

At that time, things were going nowhere with respect to the Phoenix situation, and Bettman probably saw a necessity coming down the pipeline to have the Coyotes relocated. Also at that time, Seattle wasn't really in the news at all, so Quebec City was the most likely candidate if it came to be that the Coyotes had to be relocated.

Now, as SouthJerseyRanger has demonstrated a version of, if the Coyotes got relocated to Quebec City, then potentially all 6-Divisions would unavoidably might have to get a shake up. No way such a scenario would be wanted by a lot of teams. So the 4-Division idea comes into being, not for expansion purposes but to accommodate Quebec City. Also, this explains why the Eastern Divisions were only to get 7 teams each, because with the Coyotes going to Quebec City that would mean that the West and East would again be balanced (if not the Divisions themselves). Plus it was never decided on having the East - West Conferences totally done away with. And all of that is in part why Columbus (or whichever) wasn't slotted into the East, because Quebec City was already envisioned for that spot.

Now back to the present... With the Phoenix situation apparently getting at least temporarily resolved, and with Seattle now becoming another possible relocation option if necessary, I wouldn't be surprised if the 4-Division idea gets put on the backburner for a while (maybe wishful thinking on my part). Certainly, teams like Minnesota especially won't like that at all, but many of the Eastern teams might be even less keen on the idea if they don't fear Quebec City shaking up their current alignment.

Just a theory guys, but it all seems to fit what transpired with that realignment proposal last year.

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01-27-2013, 07:59 PM
  #167
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Originally Posted by SouthJerseyRanger View Post
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

and

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.
I don't think Toronto would move out of the East.

The East and West are just two different worlds. That the Dallas situation could be made worse for Dallas seems incredible, but that would do it. It may not be a huge deal to the players, but the fans are the ones who get the shaft. You can't build and sustain a good fan base when every divisional road game starts so late, or so early, or when so many conference games start late or early. In the East, you can't start a game later than 7pm. Have to get to work and school tomorrow. But in the West...meh, whatever, put the teams together by throwing darts, nobody's watching anyway.

NYR, NYI, NJ, Phi, Pit
Bos, Mtl, Ott, Tor, Buf
Was, Car, TB, Fla, Clb

Det, Chi, Nas, StL, Wpg, Min, Dal

Van, Edm, Cal, SJ, LA, Ana, Col, Phx

Everything stays the same in the East, and a 1-8 conference playoff format. The West goes top 4 in each group in the playoffs, a divisional playoff format, and a schedule to reflect that.

I think this alignment focuses on the different problems the East and West face in relation to each other. The reality of one is completely different from the other. What the NHL did in 1998 was take a model that works just shy of perfectly for the East(the SE still has to get a playoff spot, even though nobody really cares about the SE), and forced the teams in the West into the same model. That's why you have a conference that spans all 4 time zones, and why there could be two divisions that span 3 time zones.

One more thing, the Atlantic division must stay together, but Vancouver can be split from Calgary and Edmonton because those 3 teams will still keep their conference rivalry. Can't split up Pittsburgh and Philly though, even with 6 divisions, because it would only be a conference rivalry. I get it, popular kid in school and all that. Like I said, just two different worlds.

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01-27-2013, 08:03 PM
  #168
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Originally Posted by KingsFan7824 View Post
I don't think Toronto would move out of the East.

The East and West are just two different worlds. That the Dallas situation could be made worse for Dallas seems incredible, but that would do it. It may not be a huge deal to the players, but the fans are the ones who get the shaft. You can't build and sustain a good fan base when every divisional road game starts so late, or so early, or when so many conference games start late or early. In the East, you can't start a game later than 7pm. Have to get to work and school tomorrow. But in the West...meh, whatever, put the teams together by throwing darts, nobody's watching anyway.

NYR, NYI, NJ, Phi, Pit
Bos, Mtl, Ott, Tor, Buf
Was, Car, TB, Fla, Clb

Det, Chi, Nas, StL, Wpg, Min, Dal

Van, Edm, Cal, SJ, LA, Ana, Col, Phx
I think you missed his point, KingsFan,.... the Coyotes relocated to Quebec City within a 6-Division alignment...

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01-27-2013, 08:29 PM
  #169
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Lets face it, we can talk regular season games all we want, but it really comes down to how do the divisions work in the playoffs, and who has an advantage or disadvantage.

Why can't the NHL just pick a team (or two) each year to have a decided disadvantage to winning the Stanley Cup, and also make life miserable for it's fans. For discussion sake, lets call this team with the built-in disadvantage "Team X".

Now, we will allow all other teams in the playoffs to play games that start no later than 9:15pm local time, whether home or away, with the exception of Team X. For team X, we will make sure that it regularly has to travel 3 time zones to play games, and also hose over it's fans by making the games not start until 10pm or later on weeknights. That way if the game goes into overtime (or multiple OTs) that fanbase will regularly have to choose between going into work red-eyed, or miss the game that wont't get done until 1am even if it does end in regulation.

And just to really punish the team and fans of team X, lets make sure that this disadvantage can happen over multiple playoff rounds so the players can be more worn out by the multitime zone travel and constant jet lag, so that when they play a team in the next round they are even more exhausted, all else equal.

Can anyone think of conference set up where this could work, so that one or two teams can constantly get the shaft each year?

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01-27-2013, 08:29 PM
  #170
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It's just like I said before, the politics of a potential relocation of the Coyotes to QC is what forcing the league to go the four conference route. Bettman knows full well that fitting Quebec City in a six division format isn't happening. Too many powerful owners (ie Detroit, Philadelphia, Chicago) will be alienated and or demanding indemnity (payoff) money.

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01-27-2013, 08:40 PM
  #171
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The biggest change that needs to happen is every team playing in every arena. The easiest way to accomplish this is with the 4 division(conference) alignment. I'm also a fan of divisional playoffs. The naysayers will say more than half the season is played outside the division, so how's it fair? I'd argue that a meaningful bulk of games would still be played in your division to make it 'fair'. If you're playing 5 or 6 games vs your division, how can there be an arguement that team x in div a making the playoffs over team y in div b isn't fair.

As I'm writing this, the only caveat I'd make to a strict divisional playoff could be if botth team y's inter and intra divisional record was better, then I'd say there might be merit against strict top 4 divisional playoff. Who knows if that would ever happen with the new alignment. To my initial point, if you're going to market players, then you better send them coast to coast each season.

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01-27-2013, 08:54 PM
  #172
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Originally Posted by garry1221 View Post
The biggest change that needs to happen is every team playing in every arena. The easiest way to accomplish this is with the 4 division(conference) alignment. I'm also a fan of divisional playoffs. The naysayers will say more than half the season is played outside the division, so how's it fair? I'd argue that a meaningful bulk of games would still be played in your division to make it 'fair'. If you're playing 5 or 6 games vs your division, how can there be an arguement that team x in div a making the playoffs over team y in div b isn't fair.

As I'm writing this, the only caveat I'd make to a strict divisional playoff could be if botth team y's inter and intra divisional record was better, then I'd say there might be merit against strict top 4 divisional playoff. Who knows if that would ever happen with the new alignment. To my initial point, if you're going to market players, then you better send them coast to coast each season.
It's simply not logical, and not being logical then players, teams, and eventually fans won't see the sense in it. Hey, it sounds nice, every team playing every other team at minimum in a Home-and-home, but when you do the calculation of how many games that adds up to...
currently it would be 30 games out of 82 = 36.5% of the Season against teams not competing in the Standings.
with a 4-Conference setup, it would be 44 or 46 games out of 82 = 53.5 - 56% of games against teams not competing in the Standings.
There is zero logic in that!

Hell, a team could win all of its games outside of its Division/Conference, win only 1 game against its own Div/Conf opponents and still win the Div/Conf.

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01-27-2013, 08:55 PM
  #173
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I am really surprise that it has only come up in this page that the PHX to QUE plays a huge role in the realignment. I thought that most people had that in mind already.

Truthfully, I see merits in it without the Coyotes moving. I really do. The west is a mess anyway, and with Winnipeg in the SE, well - that's not good.

But, anyway, yes. The truth is that there is no way to fit QUE into a 6-division format.

Here is why:
Start with NE- Obviously, QUE goes there. Then you want MONT, and their rival BOS. Then, how can you leave OTT out of that division? Now, you have 4 teams. How do you split TOR and BUFF?

So, you either end up splitting MONT and BOS or TOR and BUFF, or OTT gets left out.

Like MoreOrr said, I would love to be in the room for that discussion.

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01-27-2013, 09:02 PM
  #174
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But so what if more than 50% of the games are outside your division, it is still the same schedule. If team A and team B are both in the same division, and they each play one game home and away against teams from the other 3 divisions, then after 46 games against they have each played the same schedule.

The real issue, is that the current Eastern Conference teams don't like the idea of having more start times of 10:xx pm for away game (and obviously the team travel that goes with it). But they hypocritically don't mind the current set up that makes some OTHER eastern time zone teams do that all the time.

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01-27-2013, 09:07 PM
  #175
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I'm not worried about there being no expansion; as you said, the scheduling format could be adjusted to fit 30 teams.

The key point for me is this: 2 games against all other Conference teams means too many games against teams that any particular team isn't directly competing with in the Standings; and that goes doubly if you have a 4-Conference (rather than Division) setup. So ok, under that scenario Detroit, in its Central Division, only has to play 2 games against all Western Division (which includes PTZ) teams; but again, that means 46 to 48 games (more than 1/2), in an 82-84 game schedule, played outside of the Conference/Division in which a team is competing to gain a Playoff position. That's far too many, no matter how appealing it might sound to have a Home-and-home against all teams in the League. MLB can do it, but look at the number of games they play in a Season. The schedule format I suggested means only slightly more than 1/4 of a Season's games is played outside the Conference.

That Detroit fix scheduling format couldn't possibly last; scheduling formats get changed quite regularly, and many teams in the League would eventually complain about so many games against teams they don't directly compete with; and the fans will eventually complain as well,... fan preferences change with the wind.



That uneven play will eventually go away (with expansion), though there is no real reason why it should be to begin with. No, again, as I responded to MNN above, fans and teams alike will get tried of having so many games against teams which their team doesn't directly compete with in the Standings. That's be the big issue sooner rather than later. On top of that, if the League sticks with the idea of a strick top-4 making the Playoffs, then again many fans will ultimately not like an increase in the number of teams with better records not making the Playoffs. But I think the first issue is really the primary one.
With fewer games in conference and each of those in conference being heavily weighted, I would think the competition level would be that much higher during those critical games.

Perhaps this works from a marketing standpoint?

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