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A Unique, One-Year Playoff Format

from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,

If we play a 48-game season, my suggestion would be to increase the playoff pool from 16 to 24 teams. It would be a conference-only format, and the top four teams in each conference would draw a first-round bye, and then teams ranked fifth to 12th would play in a best-of-three play-in round. No. 5 would play No. 12. No. 6 would play No. 11, and so on.

The lower seed starts with a home game, and then the higher seed gets the final two games at home. You would have to do that to ensure that each team gets a home game while minimizing travel.

Once the play-in round is over, the teams are re-seeded No. 1 through No. 8 and the regular playoff format resumes.

Can you imagine the intensity of those best-of-three play-in rounds? Historically, the most buzz about the NHL playoffs comes in the first round because there are fans from 16 teams still believing they can win the Stanley Cup. Wouldn't the buzz be greater if 24 teams were still alive in this one-time unique postseason format?


Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink



When would you set the trade deadline for a shortened season?

Posted by chockster on 12/13/12 at 02:49 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

After the astrisked playoffs and shortened season, the winning team should be awarded this:

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 12/13/12 at 03:08 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Oh yeah, this will only take them 3 weeks to agree on.

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 12/13/12 at 03:15 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Gimmicks brought fans back last time. This seems right up the NHL’s playbook alley.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 12/13/12 at 03:16 PM ET


If there’s a better example of putting the cart before the horse, I’ve yet to see it.

How about a column that details the upcoming UFAs teams should be looking at replacing or retaining while he’s at it?

And, just to note, Allen’s actually good compared to most hockey writers.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 12/13/12 at 03:50 PM ET

Guilherme's avatar

If we’re talking insane entertaning and only-useful-on-beer-leagues, I much prefer Bill Simmons’ Entertaning As Hell Tournament.

Shorten the regular season by four games, guarantee the top six seeds in each conference, then have a double-elimination tourney for the seventh and eighth seeds between the remaining 15 teams.


Posted by Guilherme from Brazsil on 12/13/12 at 03:59 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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