FanPost

NHL Playoff Format


Listening to the perennial commentary (glib and superficial) in the 30 seconds allotted to NHL hockey by NPR, I have heard the usual arguments that the present format a.) allows too many teams to compete in the playoffs b.) the regular season doesn't earn top seeds enough of a buy for the playoffs c.) somehow, weaker teams are allowed to prosper at the expense of stonger. One comment suggested the NHL promotes "excitement" at the expense of "fairness."

I really disagree! I think these guys don't understand parity (they never discuss the salary cap and relative strength of small market teams). I like that gutsy Cinderella teams can get it together and go deep. I think the upsets indicate stronger teams winnowing the weak. I see nothing wrong with half the teams qualifying (and i love the end of season scramble for the bottom seeds). Moreover, I see a LOT wrong with giving top seeds more than home-ice advantage.

So on the eve of changes by the NHL, i am interested: what do you hockey die-hards think of the current and anticipated playoff formats???

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