Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Off-Topic: How to Fix NHL...My Plan

In lieu of ESPN running several NHL realignment ideas, here is my idea on how to make the NHL better.

The Plan: More Canada, Mid-Season Outdoor Tournament, Eliminate Point System, Increase Excitement!

League: 30 teams down to 28 (14 per conference)

Who’s Out: New York Islanders, Atlanta Thrashers, Florida Panthers, Carolina Hurricanes, Washington Capitals, Nashville Predators, Los Angeles Kings, Phoenix Coyotes

Who’s In: Winnepeg, Hamilton/Toronto, Houston, Seattle, Quebec, and Hartford

Easter Conference:

The Orr Division:
Boston Bruins
Buffalo Sabres
Montreal Canadiens
New Jersey Devils
New York Rangers
Philadelphia Flyers

The Lemieux Division
Columbus Blue Jackets
Ottawa Senators
Pittsburgh Penguins
Tampa Bay Lightning
Toronto Maple Leafs

Western Conference:

The Howe Division
Chicago Blackhawks
Dallas Stars
Detroit Red Wings
Minnesota Wild
St. Louis Blues

The Gretzky Division
Anaheim Ducks
Calgary Flames
Colorado Avalanche
Edmonton Oilers
San Jose Sharks

Schedule: From 82 games to 66 (play divisional teams four times, and everyone else twice).

Introducing Hockey Week:
A mid-season tournament with games played at 5 pre-determined locations (i.e. Chicago, Green Bay, etc.) with all games being played out-doors. The tournament will be held the week after the Super Bowl (in February).

Hockey Week Format will be:
1st round: 8 seed vs. 9 seed, 4 seed vs. 13 seed, 5 seed vs. 12 seed, 6 seed vs. 11 seed, 3 seed vs. 14 seed, 7 seed vs. 10 seed.

1st and 2nd seed in each conference gets a bye to second round.

1st round (Tuesday): 4 locations (2 for each conference) with 3 games per location on same day (12 games total)
2nd round (Wednesday): 4 locations (2 for each conference) with 2 games per location on same day (8 games total)
3rd round (Thursday): 4 locations (2 for each conference) with 1 game per location (4 games total)
Conference Championship (Saturday): the 5th location for both games
Finals (Sunday): same location as Saturday
Hockey Week Implications: Conference winners are guaranteed playoff spot and home field advantage for first round (at least 4th seed).
Finals winner is guaranteed home field advantage throughout playoffs (1st seed).

All games played during Hockey week will be included in regular season standings.

Regular Season Rules changes: Overtime is extended to 25 minutes and after that there will be a shoot-out.

Standings will be determined by record only, with no points system (you either win or lose a game).

Tiebreakers will be: 1) Record in games decided in regulation, 2) record in games decided in overtime, 3) record in games decided in a shoot-out

New Playoff Overtime Rule: One 30 minute overtime, followed by a shoot-out.
So who doesn't like this plan? Make sure to leave comments, telling me what you think!


  1. You're an idiot. You can't move the team with the best player in the league that sells out most games and is now the second most important team in DC.

    Get out of here with that. Some of your other ideas are good, but moving that Caps is a retarded idea.

  2. Reply to Anonymous:

    I wouldn't get too caught up on which cities stay/go. I'd be fine with keeping Washington. They can stay instead of Hartford getting a city.

    I think the other parts I mentioned are more exciting anyway(Hockey week with all outdoor games, no point system, shoot-outs in playoffs).

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  4. Phoenix, Atlanta, and Nashville are not hockey cities...More Canadian cities are needed. Winnipeg Jets should be reinstated immediately. The Phoenix Coyotes shouldn't exist. Nobody goes to their games. Phoenix is in the middle of the desert. People are not incline to go to hockey games. Somehow, Gary Bettman hates Canada and refuses to allow the team to move back to Canada.

  5. You must have meant that only the first and second seeds get a first round bye, because they must play the 14th seed, otherwise it makes no sense.

    Also, it is called home-ice advantage, not home field advantage.

    Having an Ot period that is longer will weaken the conclusion of some games. You will have players playing an even longer period at the end of the game than the beginning, they will be exhausted, leading to some weak goals. It will just make things worse.

    I do like your suggestion for the standings. the point system the NHL uses now is terrible.

  6. I can't behind a shoot out in the playoffs. The sudden death ending of a game (even when it doesn't come too suddenly) can't be beat.

  7. Without being a dick like some other people, as an actual hockey follower and season ticket owner, moving the caps is an awful idea

  8. Reply to Pat:

    Thanks Pat. As I said before, try not to get too caught up on who's in/who's out.

    Washington can stay- Hartford's out...problem solved.

    I think Hockey Week and the getting rid of the point system are the main things to consider.