With National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman considering realignment for the 2012-2013 NHL season, I thought I would offer my own plan for consideration:
Kings, Ducks, Sharks, Canucks, Coyotes
Avalanche, Oilers, Flames, Stars, Wild
Blues, Blackhawks, Red Wings, Blue Jackets, Maple Leafs
Lightning, Panthers, Hurricanes, Predators, Jets
“Obnoxious Division” (because the fans are mostly New Yorkers and Quebeckers)
Rangers, Islanders, Sabres, Devils, Canadiens
Bruins, Senators, Capitals, Flyers, Penguins
Here’s why my plan is awesome:
– There are a total of seven Canadian NHL teams. My plan has at least one Canadian team per division. That way, no division will get ignored by the CBC.
– Several states/provinces have multiple teams. My plan makes it so that each of these teams will necessarily develop heated intradivision rivalries with each other. (California has three teams, all in the Pacific Division; Alberta has two teams, both in the Western Division; Florida has two teams, both in the Southern Division; Pennsylvania has two teams, both in the Northeast Division; New York has four teams—well, if you include the Devils, and I do—and they are all in the Obnoxious Division.) The only exception to this rule is Ontario, with the Senators and Maple Leafs playing in different divisions. But this is necessary so that every division has at least one Canadian team. Also, Ottawa is the capital of Canada, and Washington is the capital of the United States, and they are placed together in the Northeast Division for the sake of international rivalry (and/or jingoistic hatred).
– Geographically, it makes more sense than the current alignment. It’s not perfect (with the Jets squad in the Southern Division), but it’s still an improvement. (And yes, I’m aware that a major reason for the proposed realignment in the first place was the Atlanta Thrashers moving to Winnipeg to become the Jets, thereby making the NHL’s current “Southeast Division” look like a ridiculous misnomer. So? Winnipeg is kinda to the south…for Canada.)
– Seriously, you just know this plan is gonna look good compared to whatever shit sandwich Bettman eventually comes up with.
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