Now that we’re all settled on realignment now it’s time to get down to the serious stuff:
What the heck do we name these new conferences?
The old fashioned 1980s traditionalist in all of us wants to see a throwback to the way things used to be before the NHL got all corporate and NBA-ified. Bringing back the names of the old divisions (Patrick, Adams, Norris, Smythe) has everyone’s nostalgia up and really, why not? It goes back to that whole “embracing your uniqueness” we talked about yesterday.
Naming the conferences after the founders of the league gave the NHL its identity and gave us all a reason to look up just who the heck these guys were that the divisions were named after. It might not be as fun as Paul Bissonnette’s idea for naming the conferences after rappers, but I don’t know that we’re ready for the Biggie Smalls Conference just yet.
NHL.com Red Wings reporter Bill Roose throws some water on our historical hopes saying he’s hearing that the conferences will be named geographically just how they are now going with Atlantic, Northeast, Central, and Pacific Conferences.
Not only would this solution be boring but it’s completely inaccurate for the Northeast Division. Unless both Florida and Tampa Bay are relocating to Quebec City and Hamilton, Ontario there’s little chance for them to be confused with being northeast teams.
If you want to go historical and new school, the suggestion of naming the conferences after Wayne Gretzky, Bobby Orr, Mario Lemieux, and Gordie Howe is out there as well. Only issue there is naming a conference after a current owner (Lemieux) is probably a big no-no. Good luck picking an appropriate fifth person for that honor.
Sadly enough, the boring geographical way to name the conferences is probably viewed as the easiest way to handle things. At the very least they could just name the Northeast Conference the “Snowbird Conference” to honor their two Florida teams.