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Old 04-06-2013, 09:27 AM
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Vincent Lecavalier's Lifetime Contract
 
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As most everyone knows the NHL will realign to just four divisions in two conferences next season, and while most hate it, not everyone does.
http://legrandclub.rds.ca/profils/78.../157079/public

Guillaume Lavoie of rds.ca writes that typically no team in the SE division ever really deserves to be in the playoffs because all five are so weak, and letting one in for winning the division just makes easy pickings for whomever they play. He likes the idea that now all the former SE teams will have to enter the playoffs through the front door instead of sneaking in the back. He notes the unfairness of a team with fewer points displacing one with more, just so that all divisions can be represented in the top three clubs at season's end. Then comes the surprise...

He literally contradicts himself to write in SUPPORT of the Lightning: "Two of the premier scorers in the NHL, but incapable of putting up two consecutive wins. As I said with the Hurricanes, the problem is between the pipes; let's hope that Ben Bishop will fix all that and that the return of Vincent Lecavalier gives this team the necessary energy to reach the top of the southeast division in order to make the playoffs."
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:17 AM
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Funny but a lot of those Southeast backdoor entries have gone on to do very well in the playoffs. I can't think of too many one and dones from our division actually... Besides the Thrashers.
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Old 04-06-2013, 01:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Top Shelf View Post
while most hate it, not everyone does.
Outside of Tampa, I don't think that this is the case.
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Old 04-06-2013, 01:12 PM
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Tampa and Carolina have Stanley Cups. Tampa and Washington have had deep runs in the playoffs in recent years. It's true to say we have 2 of the weakest franchises in hockey in our division: Florida and Atlanta/Winnipeg, but the top 3 teams in the division year to year have decent resumes.
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Old 04-06-2013, 02:09 PM
Xaej Xaej is offline
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Further illustration on the topic of weak/strong divisions, I have assembled some stats below.

Our current 6-division format was (mostly) brought into existence in the 1998-1999 seasons. Since the 2004-2005 season did not happen, that makes 13 years under the current format. Worth noting is that some teams were brought into the league during this time.

Of these 13 years, the champions are as follows:

1998-1999 Dallas Stars
1999-2000 New Jersey Devils
2000-2001 Colorado Avalanche
2001-2002 Detroit Redwings
2002-2003 New Jersey Devils
2003-2004 Tampa Bay Lightning
2005-2006 Carolina Hurricanes
2006-2007 Anaheim Ducks
2007-2008 Detroit Redwings
2008-2009 Pittsburgh Penguins
2009-2010 Chicago Blackhawks
2010-2011 Boston Bruins
2011-2012 Los Angeles Kings

That gives us the followings:
13 Champions
3 Pacific
3 Central
3 Atlantic
2 Southeast
1 Northeast
1 Northwest

Therefore, based on number of cup wins alone, the Northeast and Northwest would be the "weakest" divisions in the league.

Also of note are duplicate champions. For example, of the 3 championships in the Central division, 2 of them are the Detroit Redwings. So, should this - in reality - represent any impact to the overall "strength" of the division? Should they actually be considered a 2-champion division? If so, the same would apply to the Atlantic Divisions with 2 cups to the New Jersey Devils. This gives us a revised, weighted view of:

Pacific - 3
Atlantic - 2*
Central - 2*
Southeast - 2
Northeast - 1
Northwest - 1

This puts the Southeast pretty on-par in terms of the league average of cups per division.

That said, there is obviously more to it than cup wins alone. Or is there? An opinion for you to reach on your own, I suppose. In the end, is the cup all that matters? If so, read no further.

Otherwise, I have included the "final four" from each of these seasons.

1998-1999
Buffalo (Northeast)
Toronto (Northeast)
Dallas (Pacific)
Colorado (Northwest)

1999-2000
Philadelphis (Atlantic)
New Jersey (Atlantic)
Dallas (Pacific)
Colorado (Northwest)

2000-2001
New Jersey (Atlantic)
Pittsburgh (Atlantic)
Colorado (Northwest)
St. Louis (Central)

2001-2002
Carolina (Southeast)
Toronto (Northeast)
Detroit (Central)
Colorado (Northwest)

2002-2003
Ottawa (Northeast)
New Jersey (Atlantic)
Minnesota (Northwest)
Anaheim (Pacific)

2003-2004
Tampa Bay (Southeast)
Philadelphia (Atlantic)
San Jose (Pacific)
Calgary (Northwest)

2005-2006
Carolina (Southeast)
Buffalo (Northeast)
Anaheim (Pacific)
Edmonton (Northwest)

2006-2007
Buffalo (Northeast)
Ottawa (Northeast)
Detroit (Central)
Anaheim (Pacific)

2007-2008
Pittsburgh (Atlantic)
Philadelphia (Atlantic)
Detroit (Central)
Dallas (Pacific)

2008-2009
Pittsburgh (Atlantic)
Carolina (Southeast)
Detroit (Central)
Chicago (Central)

2009-2010
Philadelphia (Atlantic)
Montreal (Northeast)
San Jose (Pacific)
Chicago (Central)

2010-2011
Boston (Northeast)
Tampa Bay (Southeast)
Vancouver (Northwest)
San Jose (Pacific)

2011-2012
New York R (Atlantic)
New Jersey (Atlantic)
Phoenix (Pacific)
Los Angeles (Pacific)

Alright, so some analysis.

Below find the total appearances per division:
Northeast - 9
Atlantic - 12
Southeast - 5
Northwest - 8
Central - 7
Pacific - 11

Weighted appearance totals (duplicates not counted); note a maximum of 5 (divisions per team):
Northeast - 5
Atlantic - 4
Southeast - 2
Northwest - 5
Central - 3
Pacific - 5

So, all 5 Northeastern, Northwestern, and Pacific teams made at least one final four appearance in the 13 years of the current alignment. Washington, Atlanta/Winnipeg, Florida, New York I, Nashville, and Columbus were the only teams to not appear at least one time in the Conference finals. Based on this metric alone, it is a safe declaration to say that the Southeast has been the consistent weakest division in the league.

Finally, an obligatory arbitrary points award system. 1 point for a final four appearance, 2 for a cup win. To clarify, a cup win would earn a total of 3 points - 2 for the cup, 1 for the final four appearance. All totals unweighted.
Northeast - 11
Atlantic - 18
Southeast - 9
Northwest - 10
Central - 13
Pacific - 17

Sorted:
Atlantic - 18
Pacific - 17
Central - 13
Northeast - 11
Northwest - 10
Southeast - 9

EDIT: Fun note, there are a maximum of 52 possible points for a division to earn. 2 from an inter-division conference final, 2 for a cup-win. 4 total; multiplied by 13 seasons.

Again illustrating the unfortunate point that the Southeast has been the weakest division in its time in the league.

DISCLAIMER: I am aware these stats are not all-telling nor definitive; they are only intended to provide a brief overview of the distributable "strength" amongst the divisions of the past 13 seasons.

Enjoy!

Last edited by Xaej; 04-06-2013 at 02:14 PM.
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  #6  
Old 04-08-2013, 07:53 AM
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Vincent Lecavalier's Lifetime Contract
 
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*whew!* Good job xaej--man, what a lot of work. It confirms what was previously suspected, that the southLeast has earned the L.

Now that it is to be no more, it occurred to me that the travel for Fla. teams will be worse than before but not as grueling as it could have been, since even the constant conference games vs. Canadian clubs mainly involve north-south flight. Compared to DET for example flying from the Eastern time zone to the Pacific and back all the time, our jet lag will be a lot more manageable. I'm still not as happy about the realignment as, say, the Panthers are to be "welcoming in" the O6 clubs whose fans constitute the majority of their attendance base, or the glaring senselessness of flying right over every city in the northeast division to get to any of our new "division rivals", but it could be worse. Anyway it is done, at least we still have our "in-state rivalry" such as it is. It seems like even though we never meet them in the playoffs our rivalry with the Panturds will deepen and intensify due to realignment
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