FanPost

Future 63-team NHL idea?

Add 33 expansion franchises in Halifax, Hartford, Moncton, Hamilton, Markham, Quebec, Baltimore, Cleveland, Norfolk, Atlanta, Birmingham, Jacksonville, Orlando, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Louisville, Milwaukee, Kansas City, Oklahoma City, Omaha, Salt Lake City, Albuquerque, Houston, Mexico City, New Orleans, San Antonio, Portland, Saskatchewan, Seattle, Las Vegas, Sacramento, San Diego and San Francisco.

The Islanders move to Brooklyn, while the Panthers change to Miami.

Realign into 9 divisions of 7 teams each. No more conferences.

Atlantic Division: Boston, Brooklyn, Halifax, Hartford, Moncton, New Jersey and New York.

Northeast Division: Buffalo, Hamilton, Markham, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec and Toronto.

Metro Division: Baltimore, Carolina, Cleveland, Norfolk, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Washington.

Southeast Division: Atlanta, Birmingham, Jacksonville, Miami, Nashville, Orlando and Tampa Bay.

Central Division: Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Detroit, Indianapolis, Louisville and Milwaukee.

Mountain Division: Colorado, Kansas City, Minnesota, Oklahoma City, Omaha, Saint Louis and Salt Lake City.

Southwest Division: Albuquerque, Dallas, Houston, Mexico City, New Orleans, Pheonix and San Antonio.

Northwest Division: Calgary, Edmonton, Portland, Saskatchewan, Seattle, Vancouver and Winnipeg.

Pacific Division: Anaheim, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose.

Reduce regular season schedule back to 80 games. Each team plays 2 home + 2 road games vs. their 6 division opponents = 24 games + a single game vs. the other 56 teams.

A 23-team playoff field includes the 9 division winners ( seeded 1 thru 9 ) + 14 wild cards ( who play best 2 out of 3 first round series' ). The Stanley Cup Finals remains best 4 out of 7, however all of the other playoff rounds are reduced to best 3 out of 5.

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