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[Discussion] '21-22 NHL Regular Season Games Played

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@Provost's thread about rolling the season back to 68 games for this year got me thinking about the number of games played in the NHL regular season. It's a topic that's been brought up before, where the players feel like they play too many games in the season - and I agree. 82 is too many games for a contact sport like hockey. Games would be a little more entertaining as well if they get more rest time. So the owners could benefit too, although they won't like cutting back on the number of games played. With the Seattle expansion in '21-22, that introduces a balanced eastern and western conference where the end result will be 16 teams in each conference with 8 teams in each division. Here is my proposal:

 

Within the division:

4 games/season x 7 opponents = 28 games

Other division in conference:

3 games/season x 8 inter-divisional opponents = 24 games

 

Other conference:

2 games/season against 1 division in the other conference -> 2 x 8 = 16 games

1 game/season against the other division in the other conference -> 1 x 8 = 8 games

 

Then you alternate from year to year on which division you play twice in 1 year from the other conference. For example, Canucks play Metropolitan division opponents twice in 1 year, and Atlantic division opponents once. Then vice versa the following year. Hopefully that makes sense.

 

So in '21-22 NHL regular season we play 28 + 24 + 16 + 8 = 76 games. Not too many games lost so I don't think ownership will have any too much of a problem with it aside from not seeing every eastern opponent once a year, but it will allow the games to get slightly more spaced out therefore enhancing the product on the ice with more rest days.

 

Thoughts?

 

EDIT: I have not done any research on whether or not this framework has been proposed yet, so my apologies if I'm plagiarizing anyone :P

Edited by Vanuckles
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I like the idea of a slightly shorter season.  Here's what I would do, unless my math is off...

 

Home & Away against entire league = 62 games

+ additional home & away against own division = 14 games

total = 76 games

 

Maybe a little simpler and you get to see every team in your rink every season / visit every rink every season.

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2 minutes ago, goalie13 said:

I like the idea of a slightly shorter season.  Here's what I would do, unless my math is off...

 

Home & Away against entire league = 62 games

+ additional home & away against own division = 14 games

total = 76 games

 

Maybe a little simpler and you get to see every team in your rink every season / visit every rink every season.

Hmm interesting. So you'd lump opponents from the other division within the same conference with inter-conference opponents. I actually did go down that route, but to me it made more sense to play opponents in your conference more often than the ones in the other conference. Plus it would cut down on travel as well. That said, if it means shortening the season, I don't mind your idea at all.

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1 minute ago, Vanuckles said:

Hmm interesting. So you'd lump opponents from the other division within the same conference with inter-conference opponents. I actually did go down that route, but to me it made more sense to play opponents in your conference more often than the ones in the other conference. Plus it would cut down on travel as well. That said, if it means shortening the season, I don't mind your idea at all.

The way I looked at it was as a choice.  Either you could play additional games against the other division within the same conference, or you could play at least home & away with every team in the league.  I chose the latter.

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I would be all for playing fewer regular season games, but that takes away revenue and salary... so no one would go for it.

 

Have a bigger playoff format maybe with more teams to make up some games.

 

Or do some sort of mini tournament in the dog days of Jan/Feb (like soccer has the Cascadia Cup)... where it is a Division or conference playoff that means something like home advantage in the Stanley Cup playoffs.  Anything to make some of those boring mid season games more entertaining 

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I wouldn't mind playing just a few fewer games--something like 76 would be good. That said, I do think owners would vehemently protest. Despite the perhaps better quality games and healthier players, I suspect they wouldn't feel it's worth the lost revenue of the 6 missing games per team (3 home games, I suppose).

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5 hours ago, -AJ- said:

I wouldn't mind playing just a few fewer games--something like 76 would be good. That said, I do think owners would vehemently protest. Despite the perhaps better quality games and healthier players, I suspect they wouldn't feel it's worth the lost revenue of the 6 missing games per team (3 home games, I suppose).

I agree.  The only way I ever see this happening is if there was a trade-off, like an expanded playoffs.

 

I have a feeling that with the next CBA they will add 4 more wildcard teams to the playoffs, creating a play-in round.  Maybe single game, maybe best of three.

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13 minutes ago, goalie13 said:

I agree.  The only way I ever see this happening is if there was a trade-off, like an expanded playoffs.

 

I have a feeling that with the next CBA they will add 4 more wildcard teams to the playoffs, creating a play-in round.  Maybe single game, maybe best of three.

I wouldn't mind a best of three, but that would make the season very, very long if they still kept 82 games. Best of one would feel a bit too luck-based.

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32 team league = 4 division x 8 teams/ division

 

7 opposing division teams x  4 games per season= 28 games

24 non divisional teams x 2 games = 48 games

Total: 76 games

 

Regulation Wins are 5  points

OT Wins are  4 points:

Shootout Win are 3 points

Shootout Loss: 2 Points

OT loss : 1 point

Regulation Loss: 0 Point

 

Encourages teams to play and win in regulation more

 

Playoff Format:

4 Teams out of each division make the playoffs and play each other 

 

Once you have the divisional winner you are left with 4 teams

Play the semi finals on a point seeding basis = could have a team in the western time zone to play against an eastern team in semi finals

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if the season is reduced from 82 to 76 games, each team loses 3 home games. So for 32 teams, that is a total 96 games lost. On average base on a quick google search, the profit of an average Regular season game is $1,311,860.16. 96 games multiply by $1,311,860.16 that is an estimated loss of $125,125,938,572.48. You distribute that number to 32 teams, each team would lose $3,935,580.39‬ in profit per year during the regular season. Let's round this up  about $3.9 million each. That would be the amount to sign for an average middle 6 forward or a #4 defenseman. Would be interesting to see if teams would go down this road.

 

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