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Go big on NHL realignment



The NHL has been struggling for years with teams that are not profitable. Forbes said it best: "Of the league’s top 13 markets for revenue growth, which have collectively averaged a 48% increase over the past five years, none is further south than Pittsburgh."

Why does the NHL insist on keeping 11 non-profitable teams afloat in markets that don't care enough about hockey to keep their team there?

This is the year for the NHL to take dramatic steps. Not only realignment but relocation and resizing!

2 conferences, 4 divisions & 28 teams

-------Eastern Conf----------------------Western Conf

Division A----Division B---------Division C--------Division D




Penguins------Maple Leafs--------Blues---------------Sharks



Hartford--------Quebec-------------Blue Jackets------Seattle

Coyotes move to Seattle

Panthers to Quebec

Islanders to Hartford

Hurricanes to Hamilton

Predators and Lightning fold (current players enter draft with current contract)

Division A & B in the Eastern Conference are perfect.

Division C & D needs some help but works out the best as is.

Breakdown of the schedule:

9 Games = teams in your division (54)

1 game = every other team in the league (21)

75 games total

Shorten the season from Oct 15th - March 15th which is 150 days.

That's an average of 1 game every 2 days.

Playoffs Round 1

1a, 1b, 1c, 1d = bye

Series 1 - 2a vs 3b

Series 2 - 3a vs 2b

Series 3 - 2c vs 3d

Series 4 - 3c vs 2d

Playoffs Round 2

Series 5 - 1a vs Series 2 Winner

Series 6 - 2a vs Series 1 Winner

Series 7 - 3a vs Series 4 Winner

Series 8 - 4a vs Seres 3 Winner

Playoffs Round 3

Series 5 winner vs Series 6

Series 7 winner vs Series 8

Finals are over by early May


Recommended Comments

I like the 4 divisions although I'm not sure the NHL would move that many teams around.

Having the season shorter and the playoffs end earlier is also advantageous.

Being a Flyers fan that the "A" division looks great. As I said in the shoutbox about your blog - that would develop some serious hate between those teams.

Although it's probably unlikely I like the layout and would be in favor or it.

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Some of these moves make sense, which is why it's totally unrealistic from a Betteman point of view. The little midget troll will *still* not admit defeat in Phoenix, so having him give up on his dream of hockey in Florida in one fell swoop is madness.....just not gonna happen. The other factor not brought up is the NHLPA, do you think they will be in favour of having their ranks drop drastically overnight?....I'm thinking they would be a roadblock to this plan also....in fact they would try to block any plan that included teams folding and not re-locating.

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