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Ed Snider says “total realignment” is on the way

Nov 15, 2011, 8:45 AM EDT

Bill Barber, Ed Snider Getty Images

Flyers chairman Ed Snider is a man who would know things and he tells’s Tim Panaccio that total realignment is on its way to the NHL.

What Snider means by that is that he believes the NHL will adopt a four conference setup, much like has been discussed already, only this time around he says that all traditional rivals will be kept together including the Flyers and Penguins.

In case you’d forgotten, the last realignment proposal that was leaked had the two in different divisions meaning they wouldn’t play each other quite so often, a solution that had both teams upset about things.

So where does that bring things? CBC’s Elliotte Friedman wrote in his 30 Thoughts column that when the GMs get together in early December they’ll have plenty to chew on about realignment. They’ll also discuss a potential change to how the playoffs are handled. One proposal has it so that the final four teams would be re-seeded so the top team would face the worst of the four regardless of conference. It’s curious, but tough to see teams buying into that one enough to approve it.

If teams are broken up in four conferences with a balanced schedule, however, and not broken up necessarily by East and West, just about anything can go. We could be in for a bold new future.

  1. sf49erguy - Nov 15, 2011 at 9:21 AM

    I hope they consider time zones in all this.

    • gbiscottagecheesefatties - Nov 15, 2011 at 2:50 PM

      I agree. the central time zone really gets screwed over with the current system… take the Wild for example

  2. comeonnowguys - Nov 15, 2011 at 9:45 AM

    Don’t send Detroit “east.” Columbus is a better fit, and farther east. With larger divisions and increased emphasis on divisional play, there will be less of those 10pm starts.

    Actually I hope they wait a bit and see how this burgeoning wave of team movement hits before they make any major changes. Don’t want to have to go through this again in five years.

  3. donttouchthedirtypenny - Nov 15, 2011 at 12:33 PM

    I love the idea of re-seeding the final four regardless of division/conference. Thirty years ago all playoff teams were seeded 1-16, so you ended up with divisional rivals in the SCF. That’s what happened then the Islanders beat Philly on Nystrom’s goal. Divisional rivals in a SCF. Beautiful to watch. Heck, I’d support seeding all playoff teams 1-16, and re-seeding each round.

  4. stebutt - Nov 15, 2011 at 12:39 PM

    Swap Nashville with Winnipeg and be done with it.

    • comeonnowguys - Nov 15, 2011 at 1:37 PM

      You still have three divisions, and two teams in the eastern time zone playing a lot more games after 10pm than they should.

      Larger divisions mean more games against regional rivals, and less time adjusting to three-hour time difference.

      Columbus would still make better sense than Nashville. Nashville’s CST, Columbus EST. Plus, if they go to four divisions, fans in ohio already have natural rivalries with Pittsburgh and Washington (well, Balitmore/DC)

  5. pastabelly - Nov 15, 2011 at 1:33 PM

    If Quebec gets the Phoenix team, get them in the Northeast and send Toronto packing to play in a division with Detroit. Agree on swapping Nashville (or Columbus) for Winnipeg.

  6. 8man - Nov 15, 2011 at 1:37 PM

    Jah! Don’t be a girly-man and do partial realignment. Do total realignment!

    “I mix hockey divisions up and put them down!”

  7. jbandit2116 - Nov 15, 2011 at 7:00 PM

    Who cares what a rambling old gas bag of wrinkles has to say.

  8. quizguy66 - Nov 16, 2011 at 12:52 PM

    Haven’t really considered realignment scenarios that don’t have the NJ/NY area teams NOT with the Florida teams. But if Pittsburgh is in with Philly (who’ll definitely be in with NJ/NYR/NYI) that probably means that the case. Figuring it out, it’s not so bad:

    Patrick Conference:
    New Jersey
    New York Islanders
    New York Rangers
    Montreal (can’t see them split from the B’s)
    Buffalo (could be TOR, could be OTT, could be crybaby DET)

    Norris Conference:
    St Louis
    Minnesota (all 5 from the old Norris, eh)
    Winnipeg (another old Norris team)

    Adams Conference (could just as easily call this one the Bettman Conference):
    Tampa Bay

    Smythe Conference:
    Los Angeles
    San Jose

    As a side-note, having Phoenix in an 8-team conference as well as the same for the Islanders is good for possible franchise moves not disrupting the alignment too much.

    Top 4 in each conference qualify. First round is 1v4 and 2v3 in conference.
    Reseed at the top 8 (1 through 8) and also reseed at 4.

    Schedule would be 2 vs all non-conference, balanced against the division (with Bettman’s stupid 82 games).

    So there ya go :)

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