Skip to content

Your new NHL division names: Pacific, Central, Atlantic and Metropolitan

Jul 19, 2013, 1:23 PM EDT

Beginning next season, the realigned NHL will have a decidedly new look — and new division names.

On Friday, the league announced the Western Conference would be comprised of two divisions, Pacific and Central, while the Eastern Conference would be made up of two as well: Atlantic and Metropolitan.

WESTERN CONFERENCE EASTERN CONFERENCE
Pacific Division Central Division Metropolitan Division
Atlantic Division
Anaheim Chicago Carolina Boston
Calgary Colorado Columbus Buffalo
Edmonton Dallas New Jersey Detroit
Los Angeles Minnesota NY Islanders Florida
Phoenix Nashville NY Rangers Montreal
San Jose St. Louis Philadelphia Ottawa
Vancouver Winnipeg Pittsburgh Tampa Bay
Washington Toronto

Described as “more geographically-appropriate groupings,” the four new divisions will ensure that all 30 teams play in all 30 arenas at least once per season.

As for the playoff format, here’s more from NHL.com:

Playoff qualification will be primarily Division-based, with the top three finishers in each Division qualifying for the first 12 spots in the Stanley Cup Playoffs (and the first three “seeds” in each Division).

The two additional playoff spots in each Conference, designated as “Wild Cards,” will be awarded to the next two highest-placed finishers in each Conference, ranked on the basis of regular-season points and regardless of Division.

The League will play under this new alignment and playoff system for a minimum of three seasons, through the 2015-16 NHL season.

Under the previous alignment, the league was comprised of six five-team divisions.

Update: Here’s the NHL’s though process on naming the new divisions, as per ESPN.

Deputy commissioner Bill Daly said player names were considered for the division names but “dismissed rather quickly.”

“I don’t think there was any strong feeling that we needed to move away from geographic descriptors and orientations, which makes it easier for the fans to follow,” Daly wrote in a email.

“Also, while it’s the nature of any exclusive list, I’m not sure assigning division names to four all-time great players is fair to the all-time great players who would necessarily be excluded in that process.”

Latest Posts
  1. Canucks earn single point in loss to the Stars

    Mar 29, 2015, 1:40 AM EDT

    Dallas Stars v Vancouver Canucks Dallas Stars v Vancouver Canucks

    Vancouver leads L.A. by three points in the Pacific Division.

  2. Western Conference playoff picture: Wild keep rolling, Ducks and Preds clinch

    Mar 29, 2015, 1:05 AM EDT

    Nino Niederreiter, Charlie Coyle,Jared Spurgeon,Ryan Carter, Marco Scandella AP

    Vancouver creates breathing room in the Pacific Division.

  3. Leafs deliver blow to Sens’ playoff hopes

    Mar 28, 2015, 10:15 PM EDT

    James van Riemsdyk, Jonathan Bernier AP

    Toronto won for just the sixth time in 34 games.

  4. Blues’ Steen leaves game vs. Jackets (Updated)

    Mar 28, 2015, 9:30 PM EDT

    Alexander Steen Getty Images

    Collided with Cody Goloubef in the first period.

  5. Jones replaces Quick in Kings’ net

    Mar 28, 2015, 9:15 PM EDT

    martinjonesap AP

    He allowed two goals on nine first period shots.

  6. Video: Glass fined for butt-ending McQuaid

    Mar 28, 2015, 6:00 PM EDT

    Screen Shot 2015-03-28 at 5.39.50 PM

    It’ll cost him $3,897.85.

  7. Video: Bolts lose Garrison, Paquette in loss to Wings

    Mar 28, 2015, 5:40 PM EDT

    Screen Shot 2015-03-28 at 5.32.11 PM

    Detroit moves five points up on Boston in the Atlantic with the win.

  8. Ducks punch their playoff ticket, too

    Mar 28, 2015, 4:38 PM EDT

    Frederik Andersen, Ryan Kesler AP

    Anaheim currently has the NHL’s best record as well.

  9. Bruins ruin Lundqvist’s return

    Mar 28, 2015, 3:48 PM EDT

    Henrik Lundqvist AP

    Big win for the B’s.

  10. Predators clinch playoff berth after slipping by Caps

    Mar 28, 2015, 3:25 PM EDT

    Ryan Ellis, Filip Forsberg AP

    The West’s first ticket gets punched.

  11. Bruins chalk Rask’s absence up to dehydration (Update)

    Mar 28, 2015, 2:49 PM EDT

    Tuukka Rask AP

    The only update so far is he’s “unlikely to return.”

Featured video

Hammond leads Ottawa's turnaround
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. E. Malkin (2294)
  2. P. Datsyuk (2195)
  3. H. Lundqvist (2169)
  4. D. Dubnyk (1715)
  5. B. Little (1663)