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NHL delays realignment after NHLPA denies consent

Saturday, 01.7.2012 / 12:16 PM CT / News Articles
By Eric Postma
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NHL delays realignment after NHLPA denies consent
The National Hockey League announced that it will not move forward with implementation of the Realignment Plan and modified Playoff Format recently approved by the NHL Board of Governors for the 2012-13 NHL Season because the NHLPA has refused to provide its consent.



The National Hockey League announced that it will not move forward with implementation of the Realignment Plan and modified Playoff Format recently approved by the NHL Board of Governors for the 2012-13 NHL Season because the NHLPA has refused to provide its consent.

The radical realignment plan, approved by the NHL Board of Governors on December 5th, would have eliminated the current two-conference, six-division setup in favour of a configuration that features four conferences based primarily on geography. Two conferences would have had eight teams, and the other two conferences would have had seven teams.

The realignment plan would have had the Winnipeg Jets play in an eight-team conference with Detroit, Columbus, Nashville, St. Louis, Chicago, Minnesota and Dallas, all cities in the Central Time Zone.

REALIGNMENT VIDEO

Mark Chipman Reacts

Mark Chipman reacts to the NHLPA denying their consent for the proposed NHL Realignment Plan.  WATCH NOW ›
“It is unfortunate that the NHLPA has refused to approve a Plan that an overwhelming majority of our Clubs voted to support, and that has received such widespread support from our fans and other members of the hockey community, including Players,” said NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly. “We have now spent the better part of four weeks attempting to satisfy the NHLPA’s purported concerns with the Plan with no success. Because we have already been forced to delay, and as a result are already late in beginning the process of preparing next season’s schedule, we have no choice but to abandon our intention to implement the Realignment Plan and modified Playoff Format for next season.”

The Realignment Plan was necessary due to the fact that Winnipeg had to move out of the Eastern Conference after playing in the Southeast Division this season due to the late relocation of the franchise from Atlanta to the Manitoba capital.

The NHLPA has cited concerns about a higher travel burden for some teams, and an unfair playoff format with the proposed Realignment.

 “I was surprised by it,” said Winnipeg Jets Governor Mark Chipman. “Coming out of the meetings in December we felt really good about what had been decided, and thought that was the way things were going to unfold, so I was really surprised yesterday to find out that we’re not going to be able to proceed for next year.”

With the proposed realignment plan blocked by the NHLPA, the current NHL alignment and playoff format will be kept for the 2012-13 season.

“Scheduling is so critical, and establishing priority dates and getting the schedule built as early as possible is vital to this League, so there just isn’t time to explore any other remedies the League might have,” said Chipman.

“We’re only as good as we are collectively in operating this business. I don’t think taking another year in the Southeast is that burdensome for us, if it allows the League the opportunity to create something that is better for all of us. I don’t know if it’s that big a sacrifice for a year.”

The Winnipeg Jets will continue to play in the Southeast Division for the 2012-13 season, alongside Florida, Tampa Bay, Washington and Carolina.

“Because we’re not walking into an already determined schedule, the League will be very fair and very accommodating to us for next year.”


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STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - ANA 78 49 22 7 227 216 105
2 x - NSH 77 47 22 8 220 188 102
3 STL 75 46 22 7 228 186 99
4 CHI 75 45 24 6 213 175 96
5 MIN 76 44 25 7 219 186 95
6 VAN 75 43 27 5 215 203 91
7 WPG 76 39 25 12 215 201 90
8 CGY 76 41 28 7 224 201 89
9 LAK 75 37 24 14 200 188 88
10 DAL 76 37 29 10 236 243 84
11 SJS 76 37 30 9 212 215 83
12 COL 75 35 28 12 205 209 82
13 EDM 75 22 40 13 181 254 57
14 ARI 76 23 45 8 160 252 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
A. Ladd 76 24 37 12 61
B. Wheeler 74 25 34 24 59
B. Little 65 24 27 10 51
M. Scheifele 76 14 32 9 46
D. Byfuglien 67 18 27 6 45
D. Stafford 70 16 25 -15 41
M. Frolik 76 17 23 4 40
M. Perreault 57 18 18 3 36
J. Tlusty 66 14 15 -19 29
T. Myers 66 7 19 -9 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
O. Pavelec 19 15 7 .917 2.39
M. Hutchinson 20 10 5 .913 2.43
 
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