NHL Player’s Association has not given its consent on the realignment plan as many players and team executives of NHL expected it. The delay of the realignment generated mixed opinion as the Player’s Association did not consented to the changes that League’s Board of Governors adopted last month. Last Friday, it was decided that the plan of realignment would not be available for the session of the 2012-2013. However, in the first part of December 2011, this plan was approved by BOG.
The plan involved the movement of thirty teams of the League from the present alignment of two conference and two divisions into an alignment of four conference plan. In fact, the format of Stanley Cup Playoff was also sought for changes such as four leading teams of every conference would make post season and there will be playoffs of first two rounds within every performance.
The reason behind the delay is being cited as the lack of convincing information regarding the benefit of the realignment. Craig Adams, the representative of Pittsburgh Penguins NHLPA team said that they have an issue regarding lack of proper documentation to find out weather the National Hockey League has conducted any travel projection. They want to know if changes in the current setup would cause any change to the financial and the officials of NHL did not clarified this stand. Craig Adams also added that they are yet not turning down the idea, but they have not seen anything that would convince them to give consent to the changes.
On the other hand, the League stated on Friday that NHLPA’s delay to approve the changes has forced them to maintain the present alignment for the session of 2012-2013 so that there is no delay in the schedule and other aspects of the tournament.
However, there are supporters of this change that will bring four conferences. Particularly, the teams in the middle of the Canada and US preferred this format. This will provide benefit to the teams like Winnipeg, Dallas, Columbus and Minnesota as they will be able to play against their geographic rivals and also get better timings for television viewership. “We are disappointed with this development as we were expecting that there will be some changes as discussed earlier,” said Jim Lites, the CEO and President of the Dallas Stars. Similar feelings were expressed by the team executives from Minnesota and Columbus.