NHL Announces Realignment; Rivalries Preserved
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PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) — The National Hockey League Board of Governors approved a four-conference alignment format Monday that should give fans a lot of what they were asking for.
The Penguins will be in a conference with rivals Philadelphia, Washington, New York Rangers, New York Islanders, New Jersey and the Carolina Hurricanes.
“We are happy to maintain our traditional rivals and think this new format will be good for the league,” Penguins CEO David Morehouse said in a statement.
The league will break into four conferences — two of which have seven teams and two have eight teams. Teams within the the seven-team conferences will play each other six times a season (three home, three road). Teams within the eight-team conferences will play each other five or six times a year, operating on a rotating basis.
Every team will play out-of-conference foes twice a year — one at home and one on the road.
The top four teams in each conference will advance to the Stanley Cup playoffs, playing each other in four different brackets. The top seed will play the fourth seed and the second seed will play the third seed.
The four conference winners will advance to play each other in the third round of the playoffs with the two winners advancing to the Stanley Cup Finals.
Here are the four conferences…
New York Islanders
New York Rangers