The latest 24 team playoff proposal gives the top four teams in each conference a bye. This will pit the Carolina Hurricanes against the New York Rangers.
Gosh. The more I learn about the 24 team playoff proposal, the more I dislike it. I won’t say hate, because any playoffs just might be better than no playoffs, but I’m getting there. The latest proposal is conference-based and will give the top four teams in the conference a bye while the next eight will go by seed for a chance to take on the top four.
For the Carolina Hurricanes, who are the sixth seed in the east currently, that means facing the eleventh seed; The New York Rangers.
For all of our essay, the twelve seed was the Montreal Canadiens, who will face off against the fifth seed Pittsburgh Penguins. The Florida Panthers, who sit at the Tenth seed will have to get through the New York Islanders. The remaining Blue Jackets, the ninth seed, and Toronto Maple Leafs, the eighth seed will face each other.
If the Carolina Hurricanes win, they will have the Washington Capitals waiting for them in the second round (or the actual first round I guess).
Take a look at these seeds. Is it just me, or are there just six more teams in here than there needs to be? Montreal wasn’t looking at getting back into the playoffs, neither was Chicago realistically.
Sure Arizona, New York, Florida, and Minnesota each had an outside chance at making the playoffs, but according to Moneypuck only Florida had a higher chance than 25% and that was to usurp Toronto’s spot at third in the Atlantic. None of these teams were realistically competing for a playoff spot. They don’t deserve a playoff spot now.
But enough of me ranting.
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There is good and bad to take away from this. Let’s start with the good, shall we? If the Toronto Maple Leafs find themselves getting ousted by Colombus, The Carolina Hurricanes can possibly find themselves with a higher draft pick than just 19th.
Ok, now for the bad news. The New York Rangers had our number all season and we have not beaten them since Saku Maenalenen had a two-goal game against them.
To be fair, this is no longer the 2019-2020 season. It will be an abomination of a 2020 playoff run. When it comes to the Carolina Hurricanes, the Playoffs are a different beast. Just ask the Washington Capitals from last season. They had our number in the regular season too. They thought they were going to breeze past us in the playoffs. Boy, were they wrong.
Now, Luckily for the Carolina Hurricanes, this isn’t an MLB Play-in game. This will be an abbreviated best of five series. That means that Carolina can only afford to lose twice. Luckily, the New York crowd will be taken out of the game, but so will the Carolina crowd that fueled last year’s run.
Carolina also has top defenders returning to form and a team that plays best against rested teams. Even with this abomination of a playoff format, the Carolina Hurricanes will at least eliminate multiple opponents and may even make a back to back appearance at the Eastern Conference Finals.
Question For CC Readers: Should the Rangers, Habs, and Panthers be given playoff spots?