Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 02/25/13 at 11:25 PM ET
TSN Hockey Insiders Darren Dreger, Pierre LeBrun and Bob McKenzie gathered for the latest installment of Insider Trading and the topics discussed were the NHL's realignment plans, NHL teams indignant over officiating and Corey Perry contract talks as the trade deadline approaches.
How will the playoffs work in the NHL's new realignment plan?
Bob McKenzie: There's nothing completely final just yet and neither side has signed off on anything but what we can anticipate at this point is that the playoffs are not going to be expanded. There will still be 16 teams in the playoffs and there will be no play-in to get to the playoffs with extra wild card teams in any way, shape or form.
But we are looking at a situation like the original December 2011 plan -- four conferences with four teams in each conference making the playoffs and playing the first two rounds; just like the old divisional format in the National Hockey League. That's what the NHL wanted but the NHLPA didn't want to do that, so what we're likely to see this time around is three teams from each of the four conferences guaranteed a playoff spot and then fill out with wild card spots the rest of the way.
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