NHLPA Accepts NHL’s Realignment Plan


January 9, 2013; New York, NY, USA; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman addresses the National Hockey League lockout during a press conference at the Westin New York in Times Square. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The NHLPA has agreed to the NHL‘s realignment plan, but they would like the realignment to be re-evaluated after just one season.

NHLPA head, Donald Fehr, today released a statement regarding the NHLPA signing off on the NHL’s proposed realignment plan, “The NHLPA has given consent to NHL Realignment. It will be re-evaluated after the 2014-15 season.”

Seeing as it will be re-evaluated after just one season, its easy to imagine that there will most certainly be a tweak or two to the realignment.

Presuming the plan was accurately reported in the first place, The NHL will be divided into four divisions with two divisions per conference. The Eastern Conference will have 16 teams and the Western Conference will have 14 teams, which means the Western Conference teams would mathematically have an advantage when it comes to making the playoffs.

Instead of breaking down the divisions and conferences, I’m just going to be lazy and post a picture courtesy of SBNation.com:

NHL Realignment Plan. Photo courtesy of SBNation.com.

The red and yellow boxes will be the two divisions in the Western Conference, while the blue and green make up the two divisions that will be in the Eastern Conference.

Some fans like the realignment plans while its left others scratching their heads. Well folks, you can’t please everyone but if you can please most of the masses thats a good thing and it appears that’s just what the NHL has done.

Finally, the NHL Board of Governors still need to vote in favor of the realignment proposal before it can finally be made official. The NHL’s deputy commissioner, Bill Daly, released this statement: “The NHL Players’ Association confirmed to us today that it has consented to a revised Plan for Realignment, effective for the 2013-14 season.  Our next step will be to bring the proposed Plan for Realignment to the NHL Board of Governors for its consideration.  We will update the status of the process as future developments warrant.” 

It’s important to note that they signed off on a similar proposal back in 2011, so I don’t see them voting against this proposal.