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NHL playoffs expanding?

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This is from the new NHL CBA:

16.2 Playoff Games.  The NHLPA has consented to granting the League, either in the 2005-06 NHL Season, or, alternatively, in the 2006-07 NHL Season, the option to institute in any League Year a "Playoff Qualification Round" preliminary to the Playoffs, which will consist of one (1) round involving four (4) Clubs in each Conference, with each series in the round having a maximum of three (3) games, with the winner of each series advancing to the Playoffs.  If the League institutes a Playoff Qualification Round in either 2005-06 or 2006-07, the parties agree to thereafter jointly evaluate and discuss such experience.  If the League desires to implement a Playoff Qualification Round with respect to future NHL Season(s), it may only do so with the consent of the NHLPA, which shall not be unreasonably withheld.  The Playoffs will consist of four (4) rounds, with each series in each round having a maximum of seven (7) games.

Interesting. :therock:

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I've heard about the rumour of implementing this for some time already and I would be disgusted if they put it in. It makes the race to the playoffs so much less interesting. Having 20 of 30 teams basically make the playoffs is a joke. 16 teams is by far enough and if it expands to 20, many people won't even bother watching the regular season, because it has little meaning anymore and the intensity of the playoff race is decreased.

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First of all, it ruins tradition.

How?

BTW, Didn't the NHL use a similar system in the 1970s?

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When I started watching hockey, 16 of 21 teams made the playoffs. While that may have been too many, I don't think in today's NHL that a play-in round would be a bad idea. Anything that gives more life to cities that would otherwise have no hope after Feb. / Mar. is good for the league.

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First of all, it ruins tradition.

How?

BTW, Didn't the NHL use a similar system in the 1970s?

That only lasted a couple of seasons, but the current format has been used since 1980/81. The current format is much more traditional than the other system.

No the current format has only been around since 93-94. Before that you had divisional playoffs then a conference championship then the finals. And for the first part of that format the first round was only 5 games and you had 16 of 21 teams make the playoffs.

I don't like the idea because then the NHL would be guaranteed to have under 500 team in the playoffs like the NBA does (even though the NBA has the same number of playoff teams). I think it is fine the way it is now.

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Ugh. The playoffs drag on for months already. If anything, they should cut the number of teams down, although that would make the brackets uneven.

It's the opposite of MLB, where not nearly enough teams get in.

If anything, the NHL should cut the regular season down by 20 games, and have best of five opening playoff round.

Mid-season hockey gets bogged down in the number of games, with each game losing meaning. Your team can be up one night, down the next, and it don't really mean a thing. Contrast this with football, where any real fan will not miss a game - either in person, on TV, or on the radio - because every game could change the fortunes of their team. (MLB especially suffers from this problem. Individual games mean almost nothing in the grand scheme of things.)

Cutting the number of games down would make each game more valuable and likewise IMHO improve the quality of play. Would they get the required gate receipts in the reduced number of games to make it worthwhile? Maybe, maybe not. But it would make things more interesting, that's for sure.

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Anything that gives more life to cities that would otherwise have no hope after Feb. / Mar. is good for the league.

This is the whole point. Teams have to earn hope for being in the playoffs by winning games, not having it handed to them just becuase they suck and can't do it on their own.

When 16 of 21 teams made the playoffs, the regular season became a sad joke. Now, only through rampant expansion, has making the playoffs once again gained some level of meaning, and now they want to up it to 20 of 30? Stupid. And to have your whole season come down to a best of three? Stupid.

Keep it as it is. Who needs longer NHL playoffs? Cripes, I'm the biggest hockey fan around, and I can hardly keep my interest going when it's freakin' June and 95° outside. Seriously, when the finals are done I usually find myself saying "Thank God that's finally over with." If the NHL is not done with their playoffs by Memorial Day, it's just plain rediculous. What are we aiming for with this idea, Fourth of July? Yuk.

JeffB

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When 16 of 21 teams made the playoffs, the regular season became a sad joke. Now, only through rampant expansion, has making the playoffs once again gained some level of meaning, and now they want to up it to 20 of 30? Stupid. And to have your whole season come down to a best of three? Stupid.

You aren't reading it right. They're talking about 24 of 30, not just 20.

Personally I wouldn't be opposed to the NHL having the 8th and 9th seeds play a best-of-three "play in" mini-series, but beyond that would be a joke.

Back when it was 16 out of 21 teams the NHL playoffs were a joke, and they just now, with 30 teams, have reached a point where those days are a memory. I hope they don't screw it up by going back to the regular season eliminating so few teams.

BTW, OMMF, where'd you get your hands on an electronic copy of the CBA?

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I'm sure they won't expand to 24 teams. This is probably just a provision that has been in previous CBA's that would allow the NHL to expand playoffs of they wanted.

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First of all, it ruins tradition.

How?

BTW, Didn't the NHL use a similar system in the 1970s?

I think the system your thinking about involved the whole league being seeded and reseeded after every round.

From the NHL Official Guide and Record Book/2003:

1975: With the league now expanded to 18 teams in 4 divisions, a completely new playoff formant was introduced. First the #2 and #3 teams in each of the 4 divisions were pooled together in the Preliminary round and ranked #1 to #8 based on regular season record:

1 vs. 8

2 vs. 7

3 vs. 6

4 vs. 5

(all series best-of-three)

The winners of this Preliminary round then pooled with the division winners, which had received byes into the Quarterfinals, and were ranked #1 to #8 based on regular season record:

1 vs. 8

2 vs. 7

3 vs. 6

4 vs. 5

(all series best-of-seven)

The Quarterfinal Round winners were then reseeded #1 to #4 for the semifinals.

1 vs. 4

2 vs. 3

(both series best-of-seven)

1978-Same as 1975 except that the Preliminary round had the #2 teams in each division and the next four teams in the overall regular season standings.

1980-The playoffs expanded to 16 teams with four division winners and the next 12 teams in the overall standings. The teams were ranked #1 to #16 for the 1st round.

1 vs. 16

2 vs. 15

3 vs. 14

4 vs. 13

5 vs. 12

6 vs. 11

7 vs. 10

8 vs. 9

(All series best-of-five)

The 1st round winners were reseeded #1 to #8 for the Quarterfinals.

1 vs. 8

2 vs. 7

3 vs. 6

4 vs. 5

(all series best-of-seven)

The Quarterfinal winners were reseeded #1 to #4 for the semifinals.

1 vs. 4

2 vs. 3

(both series best-of-seven)

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When 16 of 21 teams made the playoffs, the regular season became a sad joke. Now, only through rampant expansion, has making the playoffs once again gained some level of meaning, and now they want to up it to 20 of 30? Stupid. And to have your whole season come down to a best of three? Stupid.

You aren't reading it right. They're talking about 24 of 30, not just 20.

Personally I wouldn't be opposed to the NHL having the 8th and 9th seeds play a best-of-three "play in" mini-series, but beyond that would be a joke.

Back when it was 16 out of 21 teams the NHL playoffs were a joke, and they just now, with 30 teams, have reached a point where those days are a memory. I hope they don't screw it up by going back to the regular season eliminating so few teams.

BTW, OMMF, where'd you get your hands on an electronic copy of the CBA?

The way I read it is that the NHL would have the 7, 8, 9, and 10 seeds play in this preliminary round-remember, you need to have 8 teams left in each conference after the round is over.

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Mad Mac, your math is off. It would be 20 out of the 30 teams, not 24 teams, under this planned format.

Anyway, this would possibly water down the regular season. Hell, over half of the league goes on to the postseason. Why add more teams?

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The NHL is fine at 16 expanding it would be a huge mistake and will make things unecessarily complicated.

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First of all, it ruins tradition.

Once upon a time, 4 of the 6 NHL teams played for the Stanley Cup.

With that said, 16 teams is enough. I mean, if you can't pack the Caps away like the Thrashers couldn't tonight with the playoffs on the line, why should you get in?

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Mad Mac, your math is off. It would be 20 out of the 30 teams, not 24 teams, under this planned format.

Anyway, this would possibly water down the regular season. Hell, over half of the league goes on to the postseason. Why add more teams?

Read the actual text. 4 from each Conference is what's listed above.

16 current +

4 from the East +

4 from the West

24 teams

20 or 24 - either way, its too damned many.

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Mad Mac, your math is off. It would be 20 out of the 30 teams, not 24 teams, under this planned format.

Anyway, this would possibly water down the regular season. Hell, over half of the league goes on to the postseason. Why add more teams?

Read the actual text. 4 from each Conference is what's listed above.

16 current +

4 from the East +

4 from the West

24 teams

20 or 24 - either way, its too damned many.

If it's 24 teams, how will they have 4 rounds of best-of-7 afterwards?

I don't want this preliminary round. It will cheapen the worth or the 7th and 8th seeds that are hard earned and give the 9th and 10th seeds who legitimately missed the playoffs a last chance at redemption.

--Roger "Time?" Clemente.

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Mad Mac, your math is off. It would be 20 out of the 30 teams, not 24 teams, under this planned format.

Anyway, this would possibly water down the regular season. Hell, over half of the league goes on to the postseason. Why add more teams?

Read the actual text. 4 from each Conference is what's listed above.

16 current +

4 from the East +

4 from the West

24 teams

20 or 24 - either way, its too damned many.

The four from each conference would include the seventh and eighth seeds, I believe. One round of four teams, with the winners going to the playoffs, according to the text. The two winning teams would be the last two teams of the 8-team playoff per conference. Read rams80's, Seadragon's and Roger's posts...one more time.

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I really can't see how that would be good for anyone. I mean, you'd take 4 bubble teams, two of which probably have losing records, and have them play an extra round for the right to face the top 2 seeded teams?

So you'd have one of two things happen:

1. Your lowest seeds reach the 'real' playoffs tired, against a rested top seed, and get blown out anyway.

or

2. Your "rested' top seeds come out stale from not playing for a week and get bounced by some 10th-ranked squad that managed to wait until the end of April to get hot.

Sorry, but I'm with Dick Van Patten on this.

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