Monday, December 5, 2011

Realignment Going to be a 1-2 Punch?

1) From what we can discern from our various contacts in the NHL the league is likely going to plan on a "1-2 punch" in realignment. We're told that an announcement will be forthcoming later this week that Nashville will be moving to the SE division replacing the relocated Winnipeg Jets, who will take the Preds spot in the Central. A quick and easy move, and probably the one that makes the most geographical sense given all the possible choices. It simply was dumb to think about possibly moving Detroit there to make their owner happy

2) However there is the unspoken (other than here) "Elephant in the realignment room" the Phoenix Coyotes. The Yotes, from all we hear are just about ready to be relocated. The NHL has all but given up hope that a deal can be struck in the desert. There really was never a chance given the financial realities there. Only a deep pocketed local (who doesn't exist) who was willing to lose millions could keep them there. So the Board of Governors will have to decide where the team goes(likely East) thus making another realignment necessary.

3) The proposed 'Big change' realignment that would eliminate 1 division in each conference, thus giving one 8 and one 7 team division in each conference will probably be given the go ahead but not announced until next spring or even summer when the Coyotes are officially declared dead. The final decision of whom goes where will ultimately be decided depending if the Yotes go to KC as many surmise, or to Quebec City as many up north would prefer. However there isn't an NHL ready arena yet in Quebec like there is in KC and the move to KC would geographicly be easier to accomidate. The Coyotes would move to the Central and allow the Red Wings to move East where their owner has been "Ilitching" to go for years. Stay tuned folks we're told this is still a fluid situation and one that is giving Mr. Bettman quite the head ache having many owners calling him daily making thier cases of why they want to move where!

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