NHL introduces four new division names
The NHL released their 2013-14 regular season schedule on Friday along with four new division names for the newly realigned league.
According to NHL.com senior writer Dan Rosen, the NHL decided to a new realigned format for geographic purposes and decided to use the location of teams to assign new names to the four divisions. The four division names are Atlantic, Metropolitan, Central and Pacific.
The Atlantic and Metropolitan divisions will be comprised of eight teams, respectively, and will be a part of the Eastern Conference. The Central and Pacific divisions will have the same number of teams and make up the Western Conference.
Atlantic Division: Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Detroit Red Wings, Florida Panthers, Montreal Canadiens, Ottawa Senators, Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs
Metropolitan Division: New York Rangers, New York Islanders, New Jersey Devils, Washington Capitals, Pittsburgh Penguins, Philadelphia Flyers, Carolina Hurricanes and Columbus Blue Jackets
Central Division: Chicago Blackhawks, St. Louis Blues, Nashville Predators, Minnesota Wild, Colorado Avalanche, Dallas Stars and Winnipeg Jets
Pacific Division: Los Angeles Kings, Anaheim Ducks, Phoenix Coyotes, San Jose Sharks, Vancouver Canucks, Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers
The four divisions is a reduction from the six divisions the NHL originally had in place. The league will also adopt a new wild card system while remaining with a 16-team playoff format. The realignment now allows all 30 teams to play in every single arena starting next season.