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Realignment passes -- 4 conferences, no East/West (PIT, PHI, NJ, NYR, NYI, CAR, WAS)

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Old
12-07-2011, 11:22 AM
  #151
regard
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Originally Posted by KneelbeforeNeal View Post
Instead of Pacific, Central, Northeast, & Atlantic, they should have done Pacific, North, South, and Atlantic.

South = Washington, Carolina, Tampa, Florida, Nashville, St. Louis, Dallas
Pacific = Same
Atlantic = NYR, NYI, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, New Jersey, Columbus & either Chicago, Buffalo, Detroit, or Boston
North = All the remaining teams

Scheduling- 4 games against conference opponents, 2 games against non-conference. Remaining games are distributed to favor historical rivalries or spur new ones. Teams in 7 team conferences would have 14 rivalry games to be distributed & teams in 8 team conferences would have 10 rivalry games to be distributed.

Playoff seeding- top 3 from each conference plus 4 wildcards based on points. Regular season conference champs play the wildcards, 2&3 conference seeds play eachother. Everything is re-seeded for the second round, so anyone can play anyone.
No matter what people are going to complain. The way its now going to be setup is to appease as many teams as possible without hurting rivalries for the sake of fans.

This would be divying up timezones again and splitting up some "rivalries".

Doesnt matter to me but how is this better? Theres still 2 conferences of 7 and two of 8. Also whats with giving teams games based on "rivalries"? You talk about fairness. What if our "rivals" are really good and another teams suck? Schedules should be as close to even as possible.

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Originally Posted by KneelbeforeNeal
If you're in an 8 team conference, you play some conference opponents 5 times, and some 6, with it switching around each year.
That would work too. Is that the way its going to be? Is that decided?

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12-07-2011, 11:34 AM
  #152
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Originally Posted by KneelbeforeNeal View Post
If you're in an 8 team conference, you play some conference opponents 5 times, and some 6, with it switching around each year.
ah ok that makes sense, play 3 teams 6 times and 4 teams 5 times, that seems fair.
i assumed itd be play 5 teams 6 times and 2 teams 4 times, but the first way is better

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12-07-2011, 12:16 PM
  #153
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Giving everyone the same rules doesn't make something fair BTW. That's a logical fallacy.
That totally depends on your subjective definition of fairness.

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12-07-2011, 12:27 PM
  #154
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Originally Posted by Clarence Beeks View Post
That totally depends on your subjective definition of fairness.
Welcome back stranger.

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12-07-2011, 12:28 PM
  #155
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Originally Posted by td_ice View Post
It will definitely make for some "lively" debates on the main board.

Check out the links below. In the mid to late 80's the Patrick division was ultra competitive. With the team in last place often better than playoff teams in other conferences. The Norris division from the same year is up for comparison.

That year you had the Pen's with 81 points out of the playoffs, and the Leafs with 52 points making the playoffs.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Templat...sion_standings

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Templat...sion_standings
It won't be as hotly contested this time around because these days the standings are so convoluted most bubble teams will be within a couple points of each other.

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12-07-2011, 12:29 PM
  #156
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Originally Posted by Clarence Beeks View Post
That totally depends on your subjective definition of fairness.
True.

Also subjective is the thought that a set of rules is the same for everyone.


Last edited by SkullSplitter: 12-07-2011 at 12:36 PM.
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12-07-2011, 12:59 PM
  #157
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Originally Posted by regard View Post
No matter what people are going to complain. The way its now going to be setup is to appease as many teams as possible without hurting rivalries for the sake of fans.

This would be divying up timezones again and splitting up some "rivalries".

Doesnt matter to me but how is this better? Theres still 2 conferences of 7 and two of 8. Also whats with giving teams games based on "rivalries"? You talk about fairness. What if our "rivals" are really good and another teams suck? Schedules should be as close to even as possible.
The way I have it split up isn't entirely out of fairness.

IF I wanted to do that, I'd say you just have no conferences, You play 22 teams 3 times, and you play the remaining 7 teams twice, with a rotation each year. Seeding is 1-16.

However that'd suck for rivalries, which fans appreciate.

The system I'd like to see would try to:
1. create an exciting regular season schedule for fans
2. create travel schedules that make sense league-wide
3. seed the playoffs in a way that is both exciting for fans with rival matchups being highly likely at some point, but with any SCF matchup being possible.


Uneven conferences are less of a big deal if there are wildcards. There are things I do like about the 4 conference system, and it does make sense in terms of scheduling & travel and going forward with 2 expansion teams in the next few years.

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12-07-2011, 01:06 PM
  #158
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Originally Posted by td_ice View Post
It will definitely make for some "lively" debates on the main board.

Check out the links below. In the mid to late 80's the Patrick division was ultra competitive. With the team in last place often better than playoff teams in other conferences. The Norris division from the same year is up for comparison.

That year you had the Pen's with 81 points out of the playoffs, and the Leafs with 52 points making the playoffs.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Templat...sion_standings

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Templat...sion_standings
It's not that stuff like this is likely to happen, but that it's possible irks me. Having a wildcard system wouldn't fix it entirely, but it would make it better.

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12-07-2011, 01:12 PM
  #159
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The new setup should be good. Uneven confereces kind of sucks, but it's really not a big deal, there were uneven conference back durin the Norris, Smythe, Adams and Patrick divisional playoff set ups.

Also, if they do even it up, I can't see expanding being economically viable now or in the near future.

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12-07-2011, 01:44 PM
  #160
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Originally Posted by KneelbeforeNeal View Post
It's not that stuff like this is likely to happen, but that it's possible irks me. Having a wildcard system wouldn't fix it entirely, but it would make it better.
I hear ya. I doubt it is likely as well. Especially with a cap system in place, which did not exist back in the day.

But one thing that the old Patrick division did, which I really liked, was that it forced the Pen's to get better each year. If you didn't, you fell behind in that division. I really believe that being in such a division/playoff format, helped us to be Cup champions in '90-'91 and '91-'92.

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12-07-2011, 01:51 PM
  #161
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What bothers is me what I showed in my example. In the west when I did that, 1, 2, 3, 4 are in the same division and 5,6,7,and 9 were in the same division.

5 and 6 would be getting rewarded with home ice for being better than a bubble team, but worse than a top echelon team while the top 4 in that conference pummel each other in the opening 2 rounds.

That's my only beef, and that problem will go away due to the divisions. If a division is weak, a team is going to rack up points, so it won't look as bad, but if the same format we're playing in now were in place, you'd probably see a much larger disparity between divisions, and it would obviously look less fair...like it does in my example.

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12-07-2011, 01:58 PM
  #162
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The biggest problem with our new conference is that it may be decades before I get to see playoff hockey here. I feel bad for Carolina fans because I don't see a way for them to break the top 5, let-alone the top 4. That also means no playoff hockey for me. /

On the plus side, the Pens will be here three times a year.

Beyond that, the playoffs will be two rounds of all-out war to send a team on. They'll be well-tested but they'll be banged up.

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12-07-2011, 03:17 PM
  #163
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Originally Posted by Syrinx View Post
The biggest problem with our new conference is that it may be decades before I get to see playoff hockey here. I feel bad for Carolina fans because I don't see a way for them to break the top 5, let-alone the top 4. That also means no playoff hockey for me. /

On the plus side, the Pens will be here three times a year.

Beyond that, the playoffs will be two rounds of all-out war to send a team on. They'll be well-tested but they'll be banged up.
The 'Canes were bound for suckitude anyways. They've been hanging on for years with scotchtape and glue. Their second line currently consists of Alexei Ponikarovsky and Chad LaRose. They're in really bad shape.

The sooner the rebuild in full, the better. No matter the format.

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12-07-2011, 04:15 PM
  #164
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Originally Posted by Syrinx View Post
The biggest problem with our new conference is that it may be decades before I get to see playoff hockey here. I feel bad for Carolina fans because I don't see a way for them to break the top 5, let-alone the top 4. That also means no playoff hockey for me. /
These things are so cyclical though. A few short years ago the Pens, Caps, Kings and Hawks were the jokes of the league. Rangers looks pretty solid this year but have been mediocre for a long time. Devils could be heading into dark years. Caps might never reach the same peak, who knows.

It's silly to dislike the changes based on the current strength of the conference. And jeez, even so, were not exactly the fanbase that needs to be scared.

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12-07-2011, 05:39 PM
  #165
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These things are so cyclical though. A few short years ago the Pens, Caps, Kings and Hawks were the jokes of the league. Rangers looks pretty solid this year but have been mediocre for a long time. Devils could be heading into dark years. Caps might never reach the same peak, who knows.

It's silly to dislike the changes based on the current strength of the conference. And jeez, even so, were not exactly the fanbase that needs to be scared.
But there are certain teams in the NHL that have huge built in advantages in terms of market location, deep pocketed ownership, committed ownership, attractiveness to free agents, and that kind of stuff. Rangers and Flyers are definitely on the list. Devils have been too, but we'll see about their current issues. Don't kid yourself, the Caps are very well set up to be good for a long time. And of course the Pens.

So yeah, things are cyclical, but in this conference, I think it's going to be pretty static for a good while.

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12-07-2011, 08:00 PM
  #166
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Been holding off for awhile about this to see what changes are made, and I really hate teams that lose out being in the playoffs due to other teams having to be in because, they're the bottom 4th team in a conference, yet another team in the other conference has more points and deserves to be there instead.

Take the top 16 teams in the league and have a playoff using them. If an entire conference misses out, play better and win more.

Sometimes parity sucks. If they don't win enough to be a top 16 team in the league, they don't deserve to be in the playoffs at all. They're not putting all the best teams out there and it shows with the many 4 and out we use to see in the old format.

How could anyone argue this. I sure would be angry if my team had 90+ points and missed the playoffs because 4 teams in the conference had more, and the other conferences had a couple 80/82 point teams making it.

Showcase your best 16 teams. Better playoffs and better parity when all who deserve to be there are there.


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12-07-2011, 08:47 PM
  #167
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What bothers is me what I showed in my example. In the west when I did that, 1, 2, 3, 4 are in the same division and 5,6,7,and 9 were in the same division.

5 and 6 would be getting rewarded with home ice for being better than a bubble team, but worse than a top echelon team while the top 4 in that conference pummel each other in the opening 2 rounds.

That's my only beef, and that problem will go away due to the divisions. If a division is weak, a team is going to rack up points, so it won't look as bad, but if the same format we're playing in now were in place, you'd probably see a much larger disparity between divisions, and it would obviously look less fair...like it does in my example.
Yeah, I don't like that either. I want to see the best teams get into the playoffs, & I want to see the best teams make it to the final rounds.

Part of me just thinks they should seed it 1-16 & completely ignore conferences for the playoffs.

Let's say the best four teams in the playoffs are Chicago, Detroit, Pittsburgh, and Philly. It'd be a shame that two of those teams would be eliminated before the Stanley Cup semifinals.

Under the new system I think the Stanley Cup semifinals are really going to suffer, where formerly there was a possibility for that to be one of the most entertaining rounds.

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12-07-2011, 10:58 PM
  #168
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I don't know. If you're really 'good', then you'll make the playoffs. You have to beat three or four teams within your division to get in. So go ahead and prove you're one of the four best in your division. You will get PLENTY of chances to prove just that.

No matter the system or format, if you don't make the playoffs it's your own fault. You didn't win enough to get in.

I mean, I'd love going back to the 1-16 format from the get-go, but if they changed this entire league for travel purposes, good luck convincing them to start going coast-to-coast (potentially) starting in Round 1 for a best-of-7 series.

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12-07-2011, 11:33 PM
  #169
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Originally Posted by Clarence Beeks View Post
I honestly have to wonder where you two (and everyone else who posts stuff like this) gets their opinion from, at least when it comes to Tampa Bay. No doubt that Florida has struggled mightily, but Tampa Bay has been an unmitigated success from every angle of what the league could have hoped for by expanding into a non-traditional market. Sure, ultimately, football is still king, but that can be said of pretty much every other market in the U.S., with a few exceptions. That said, there is a ton of local support for the Lightning. More importantly, youth hockey has really taken off in the Tampa Bay area.

I am biased. I admit it. But as little as two or three years ago I recall reading here and elsewhere that in the years immediately after the Cup win and all the way up to that point, the only time the Lightning could come close to filling the building consistently was when the team was in the playoff hunt and they were using ticket promotions at the same time to get more people in there.

Maybe now hockey has finally taken root (you mention local youth programs, which is usually a good sign). For sure it hasn't in Miami and I don't think it ever will except years like this year when they have a good record. I suppose Talon could turn that team into a perennial player but I tend to doubt it.

Anyway, if you have to pick two of the worst locations for growing the game and attendance, undoubtedly FLA would be one of them, and depending on the year TB or PHX the other. More likely PHX right now because TB has been more competitive of late. My main point is, if contraction is ever an option, it's a no-brainer as to which franchises. I suppose you could argue NYI too but I have to say at the very least they put fans in the building more consistently, even when they have a **** team.


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Listening to Mears in the pre-show makes me question this move. He said this new realignment will actually cost the teams more in travel. I'm not okay with that at all.
It's too early to tell. You can't broad brush it because
a) we don't know how they will break down the schedule. How many times will we play out of conference teams every year, etc?

b) regardless some teams will get screwed worse than others. Currently FLA and TB have the worst deal because all of their road games but those vs. each other will require long commutes / waste a day to prep and get there. Meanwhile everyone else in that division will be taking short flights or even buses in some cases, to get to their game.

For us, I don't see much of a travel issue at all. Everyone is relatively close by air.


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So for the next 5 years or so its going to be Pens, Caps, Flyers, with NYR or Canes battling for the fourth spot. And that will be the first two rounds of the playoffs every year?

Wachoo talkin bow Weeelus?


If the Pens, Caps, Flyers and Rags are battling for 4th, who's battling for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd? We have a very good chance of getting into the playoffs every year; it's only a question of 1, 2 or 3 IMO. What other teams do in other divisions now no longer matters and that is EXCELLENT, as long as the schedule is set up in such a way that the conference records mean the most. No more of this crap where at least one team in every division is guaranteed a Top 3 seed, which is by far the dumbest format in professional sports (other than the weird stuff that goes on in baseball maybe).


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Love it, love everything about it. First off, we get to keep our old foes, Philly and New York, and now we are going to get to see more Pens-Caps games. I am a fan of watching 2 teams play really hard and put on an entertaining game which is what you get every time the Pens match up with the Flyers and Caps. Win, lose or draw, they're always fun games to watch. Obviously this makes the schedule tougher for the Pens, but I'm not worried about it. Were going to start next season fully healthy (At least I think so) and were probably going to make a move or 2 at the deadline, so I fear no team.
Pretty much feel exactly the same way. Best teams get in per division, and the best teams are at the top, period.

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12-08-2011, 01:07 AM
  #170
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I don't know. If you're really 'good', then you'll make the playoffs. You have to beat three or four teams within your division to get in. So go ahead and prove you're one of the four best in your division. You will get PLENTY of chances to prove just that.

No matter the system or format, if you don't make the playoffs it's your own fault. You didn't win enough to get in.
Exactly. There's four spots so go get one of them. Plus I still and probably never will understand the complaining about the playoff format. If you've gotta go through someone when does it matter when you have to go through them?

Nevermind that people are complaining about stuff that I never heard a peep about when the system was used before.

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12-08-2011, 03:38 AM
  #171
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As for 'weaker teams making the playoffs'; with the proposed playoff format only one team will make it out of each conference, so in order to reach the semi-finals you basically have to be the best team in your conference. If a 'weaker' team gets into the playoffs they're probably not getting out of their conference anyway, so it shouldn't really impact any of the teams from any of the other conferences (from a sporting perspective).

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So for the next 5 years or so its going to be Pens, Caps, Flyers, with NYR or Canes battling for the fourth spot. And that will be the first two rounds of the playoffs every year?
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Originally Posted by ChiChi Vitale View Post
If the Pens, Caps, Flyers and Rags are battling for 4th, who's battling for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd? We have a very good chance of getting into the playoffs every year; it's only a question of 1, 2 or 3 IMO.
Pretty sure he meant that Pens, Caps and Flyers will lock out the top 3, with Rangers and Canes battling it out for the 4th spot.

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12-08-2011, 10:31 AM
  #172
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Exactly. There's four spots so go get one of them. Plus I still and probably never will understand the complaining about the playoff format. If you've gotta go through someone when does it matter when you have to go through them?

Nevermind that people are complaining about stuff that I never heard a peep about when the system was used before.
From a Pens fan perspective I don't mind any of the playoff stuff so much. We should be able to be in the top 4 for years to come, knock on wood. And we'd have to get through those hard teams anyways.

From a hockey fan perspective I don't like it. If a team ranked 17-20 overall makes the playoffs that really shouldn't just because of their weak conference, that seems stupid to me. The playoffs are supposed to have the best competition.

Also, from a hockey fan perspective I don't like the idea that it favors the first and second round for the best matchups. I feel like playoff hockey should get better each round. We won't be able to ever have some of those great conference final matchups: Pens/Flyers, Pens/Caps, etc. As a hockey fan it's funnest watching conference finals when the teams have a bit of history and really hate each other. Also, you want the four best teams in the playoffs to be there. Under any seeding system, there's a chance that one of the best four could be eliminated early because their regular season record doesn't match their post-season prowess, but under the new system it's practically set up to ensure that, as I think rarely will the best 4 teams be the 4 conference playoff winners.

This goes into the regular season to though. Whoever you meet in the 3rd round is definitely going to be a team you've only played twice that year against. At least in the current system you're guaranteed to have played them 4 times. It also sort of bums me out that Detroit/Colorado will only play each other twice a year now. That was one of my favorite non Pens rivalries & one that I think could heat up again with Colorado starting to get good again. I will also miss Pens games vs the Northeast & I'm also bummed that they couldn't find a way for us to play teams like Columbus, Detroit, Chicago, and Nashville 4 times while maintaining 6 games vs the Flyers & adding 2 games vs the Caps.

Back to playoff seeding though:

A wildcard system would help prevent undeserving teams from making the playoffs, while also making any playoff matchup possible in any round.

The way I see it, top 3 from each conference get in, plus the top 4 overall remaining teams. Wildcards that are 4th in their conference stay in their conference, wildcards that are 5th in their conference get seeded into another conference. That way, any matchup is possible in any round.

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12-08-2011, 06:09 PM
  #173
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Pretty sure he meant that Pens, Caps and Flyers will lock out the top 3, with Rangers and Canes battling it out for the 4th spot.
I'm pretty sure you're right.



Oops.

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12-08-2011, 06:33 PM
  #174
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I don't know. If you're really 'good', then you'll make the playoffs. You have to beat three or four teams within your division to get in. So go ahead and prove you're one of the four best in your division. You will get PLENTY of chances to prove just that.

No matter the system or format, if you don't make the playoffs it's your own fault. You didn't win enough to get in.
This is how I see it. If you're not good enough to beat 4 other teams in your own division, you don't deserve to make it.

If it comes down to arguing that you'd have more points than the 3rd or 4th place team in the other division, then you're talking about a bubble team anyway, IMO. Teams that are legitimate playoff teams and not just sneak in, are teams that will make the playoffs under any format.

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12-09-2011, 11:49 AM
  #175
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But there are certain teams in the NHL that have huge built in advantages in terms of market location, deep pocketed ownership, committed ownership, attractiveness to free agents, and that kind of stuff. Rangers and Flyers are definitely on the list. Devils have been too, but we'll see about their current issues. Don't kid yourself, the Caps are very well set up to be good for a long time. And of course the Pens.

So yeah, things are cyclical, but in this conference, I think it's going to be pretty static for a good while.
I don't buy that argument. Look at Toronto for the past 40 years, Montreal for past 20 years (and their future outlook), and Boston for most of the past 30 years (or definitely the 2000s except the past 2-3 years). If what you said was true it would suck big time to be in the new NE/Adams conference, but somehow most are saying it's the easiest one. All the factors you bring up are important but smart hockey decisions trump them all, especially in a cap world.

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