By playing five games with Tampa Bay, five with Miami, four with Ottawa and two each with San Jose and Anaheim, a team like the Rangers, for example, could be expected to pick up more points than they have this season by playing so many games in the strong Patrick Division.
It has also been at 78 games, 76, 74, 70, 60, 50, 48, 44, 36, 30, 24, 18 and 22 in the league's first season, 1917-18. The NHL regular season will be reduced from 84 to 82 games in 1995- 96, two league sources said Wednesday. Invalid email address.
View page in TimesMachine. The conferences will be unbalanced because the two Eastern divisions have seven teams each and the two Western divisions have six each. A lot had been written that the old system had got stale or was redundant. It is likely that they will be in the West and will balance all four divisions at seven and both conferences at 14.
We were able to forge a consensus. If not for the lockout, the Whalers would have had neutral-site games in Denver against the Dallas Stars and in Phoenix against the Chicago Blackhawks last season.
The other big change is the regular-season schedule, with fewer divisional games and more against conference foes. The NHL Board of Governors overwhelmingly approved the recommendation, although the Whalers were said to be one of three or four teams that were against it. Louis and Dallas, who comprise most of the current Norris Division. Please upgrade your browser.
Over the last 12 years, the top four teams in each of the four divisions have qualified, regardless of their point totals. This is an opportunity to stimulate more interest for longer for more teams.
Schedule Changes, Too. You will receive emails containing news content , updates and promotions from The New York Times.
If you're worried about statistics being tarnished because of fewer games, forget it. For the Rangers, the Islanders and the Devils, there will be fewer games among themselves. Newsletter Sign Up Continue reading the main story Please verify you're not a robot by clicking the box. The sources said NHL commissioner Gary Bettman recommended the two games originally set aside for neutral-site games be eliminated.
To preserve these articles as they originally appeared, The Times does not alter, edit or update them. Therefore, it is theoretically possible next season for one division to send as many as seven teams or as few as one to the playoffs. The new setup, approved by the Board of Governors and announced yesterday, is the first major legislative package of the administration of Gary Bettman, the new commissioner who took office on Feb.
Teams in different divisions, but in the same conference, will play each other four teams each.
Unlike baseball, which received criticism for scheduling 144 games instead of 162 this season, there is no such history in hockey. We were looking to come up with something that everyone could agree with. Currently, teams play the first two rounds within their divisions. Sign Up.