Earlier today, the NHL Commissioner, Gary Bettman, announced that the NHL has created a definitive plan to get back to business. Whether you consider yourself a football guy, a baseball guy, a basketball guy, or even a soccer guy, the news of one of the most prominent professional sports leagues returning to business can only be good news. The NHL announcement marks the beginning of the slow, but certain, return to normal operations across the sporting world. On top of that, the degenerate gambler in me is ready to be released. All that being said, the NHL commissioner said a mouthful today breaking down how the NHL will look as they resume play and I’m here to unpack it all for you below.
•The NHL will take the top 12 teams from each conference (for a total of 24 teams) based on the regular season record before quarantine as of March 12th.
•The regular season is hereby completed
•The top 4 teams from each conference have secured automatic playoff spots
•These top 4 teams from each conference will play a round-robin against one another to determine who gets the 1-4 seed in each conference
-(1) The Boston Bruins, (2) Tampa Bay Lightning, (3) Washington Capitals, and
(4)Philadelphia Flyers have clinched playoff spots and will compete in the Eastern
Conference round-robin to determine the 1-4 seed.
-(1) The St. Louis Blues, (2) Colorado Avalanche, (3) Vegas Golden Knights, and (4) Dallas
Stars have clinched playoff spots and will compete in the Western Conference round-
robin to determine the 1-4 seed.
•The remaining 8 teams from each conference will play a 5 game series against one another to fulfill the remaining 4 playoff spots.
-(5) Pittsburgh Penguins vs (12) Montreal Canadians
-(6) Carolina Hurricanes vs (11) New York Rangers
-(7) New York Islanders vs (10 Florida Panthers
-(8) Toronto Maple Leafs vs (9)Columbus Blue Jackets
-(5) Edmonton Oilers vs (12) Chicago Blackhawks