The NHL Board of Governors made it official today: the old Northeast will be joined by some jerks from Detroit and Florida. Fuck Detroit. Florida, you guys are okay.
From the NHL's press release, emphasis mine:
The NHL's Board of Governors approved the realignment plan proposed last week.
The new four-division plan, featuring a new-look set-up for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, will go into effect next season.
The NHL and NHLPA each had input into the plan to realign the League into an more geographically appropriate two-conference, four-division format that features 16 teams in the Eastern Conference and 14 teams in the Western Conference.
The Stanley Cup Playoffs will still consist of 16 teams, eight in each conference, but it will be division-based and a wild-card system has been added as a new wrinkle.
The top three teams in each division will make-up the first 12 teams in the playoffs. The remaining four spots will be filled by the next two highest-placed finishers in each conference, based on regular-season points and regardless of division. It will be possible, then, for one division to send five teams to the postseason while the other sends three.
The divisions will be temporarily referred to as Division A, Division B, Division C and Division D. Permanent names will be assigned later.
The Western Conference will house Division A and Division B, while Division C and D will consist of eight teams each and make up the Eastern Conference.
Division C has four Original Six franchises: Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs. The Buffalo Sabres, Florida Panthers, Ottawa Senators and Tampa Bay Lightning are also in the division.
The new alignment ensures that all 30 teams play in all 30 arenas at least once a season for the first time since 1997-98.
The new alignment plan will be re-evaluated by the NHL and National Hockey League Players' Association following the 2015-16 season.
So: guaranteed trips to every arena. Ramping up our hatred of the winged wheel and Steven Stamkos. The same amount of hate for the teams we've hated since time began. I see nothing bad about this plan for the Bruins.
What do you think the new divisions will be called?