Playoff Format

Discussion in 'Tampa Bay Lightning' started by Lightning1995, Dec 7, 2017.

  1. Lightning1995

    Lightning1995 Registered User

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    So the top three teams in each division are in with two wild cards? Right now the two wild cards would be the Islanders and Penguins. Division winners draw the wild cards? Uggh.

    I know it’s way to early for this discussion, but it’s clear that the Atlantic is the weaker division. The Met division is likely to pull both wild cards. I’d be fine drawing NJ in round one, but Columbus, Pitt, NYI and Washington are all really dangerous and feel more like a 2nd round draw for a top seed.

    If this is really the format, the 2 seed in the Atlantic will draw the most favorable matchup. It’s almost like we’d be better off with Toronto winning the division.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Sila v Kucherove

    Sila v Kucherove Yzerman 3:16

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    I never did look into the change in the playoff format that's been unpopular in the last couple of years. What exactly was the change?
     
  3. Lightning1995

    Lightning1995 Registered User

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    If I’m understanding the format correctly, the NHL used to seed each conference 1-8 based on point totals. Not sure if the second division winner got the automatic 2 seed or not.

    Now, the format is as I described above. Things can certainly change, it’s very early, but the top 5 teams in the Met division are all pretty tough with the potential exception of NJ, who doesn’t scare me despite their hot start.

    So Tampa has to play the top WC as the 1 seed. Today that would be Pitt. Joy. Meanwhile Toronto would draw MTL. Simply not fair.

    So we really need to pull for NJ to start losing more and be the potential 8 seed. Otherwise Tampa is better off with Toronto winning the division. Which is nuts.
     
  4. CupsOverCash

    CupsOverCash Registered User

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    Match ups is huge in determining who will win in the playoffs. It's also about who is playing well at that time of year too. If this team is healthy and focused they match up well with any team right now. Still a while to go and a lot can change. Right now I think we can beat Pittsburgh in a 7 game series. This is not the same team that won it the last few years. Their D and goaltending are not good right now and their bottom six is not playing as well as they were then either. But again things can change. A lot of hockey to go and also the trade deadline can change things too. I say go for home ice throughout the playoffs. If we get to game 7s it really helps having that game at home.
     
  5. Lightning1995

    Lightning1995 Registered User

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    It’s a garbage, head scratching format
     
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  6. Sky04

    Sky04 Registered User

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    Didn't see anyone complaining when we avoided Pittsburgh/Washington in the second round and ended up with home ice against the Islanders despite them finishing higher in the standings.

    It's unfair but we've already benefited from it, so it if it comes around you can't complain, you have to beat top teams anyways.
     
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  7. Steazy Doo

    Steazy Doo sloppy b o y e

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    iT;s UnFAIr BuT wE AlReAdY BeNeFiTeD FRoM iT
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  8. MattM92

    MattM92 Registered User

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    Conferences used to be seeded 1-8. 3 division winners had spots 1-3. So it was possible to have only one team from a division make the playoffs and this happened pretty regularly during the late 2000s and early 2010s during Washington's reign of terror over the Southeast division.

    Now we don't have conference seeding. There are two divisions per conference and each division is in it's own bracket. The divisions are seeded 1-3, making 6 teams, plus two wildcard teams. The wildcards are the two teams with the highest point totals that don't hold one of the top 3 spots in their respective division. Then the wildcards are placed into a bracket based on their seeding. The 2nd wildcard team (fewer points) is placed into the bracket that has the conference champion.

    If we went back to the old divisions and used the old playoff format with today's standings, these would be the first round matchups:


    Tampa(1) vs NYR(8)
    Toronto(2) vs Pittsburgh(7)
    NJ(3) vs NYI(6)
    Columbus(4) vs Washington(5)
     
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  9. DFC

    DFC Registered User

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    I'd rather face our stiffest competition early, when we're most likely to be healthy.
     
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  10. Bolt32

    Bolt32 Registered User

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    I always liked that format much better to be fair. I don't understand the change. To get more divisional rivalries? Whoop'dee doo.

    The above standings as you mentioned above I think is a much better draw. I think if us and Toronto are legitimately the two best teams in the east, then we should play them in the conference championship. Not the second round....anyway, that is my two cents.
     
  11. Hoek

    Hoek Stanley Principal

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    There's an easy solution to the "unfairness" of the current format. One division needs to stop sucking so much every year, then it will be all balanced whether you get a wild card or not, lol.
     
  12. Bolt32

    Bolt32 Registered User

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    I mean, if your going to win the Cup, your going to win the cup regardless of who you play against.
     
  13. MattM92

    MattM92 Registered User

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    There is no actual way to prove that lol
     
  14. Bolt32

    Bolt32 Registered User

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    Yeah sure. You could say that a seven game series against the pens could cause us injuries or whatever that they wouldn't have before hand, which ended up them losing another series down the road. Sure. Just was reiterating the philosophy that if you win the Cup, you won the cup.

    Personally I want the old format to come back. What ever though. My main focus is just us making the playoffs now. I hate that we missed it last year with the roster that we had. Once the standings are final, then I'll choose to ***** about who we play or don't.
     
  15. Lightning1995

    Lightning1995 Registered User

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    Seems like a relevant discussion even now. A top seed stuck playing maybe the 4th or 5th best record in its conference is asinine. Am I being self serving as a Lightning fan? Yes, but this is a Lightning board.
     
  16. Stamkos Indulgence

    Stamkos Indulgence Eating crow Sponsor

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    The whole idea was to develop rivalries within the division by having teams play each other frequently in the playoffs. I guess it strengthened our rivalry with Montreal in the short term, but even that feels pretty stale at the moment. I hope that 1-8 seeding comes back.
     
  17. Tak7

    Tak7 Registered User

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    It might be easier to finish 2nd in the Atlantic (and play the 3rd seed) than finish 1st (and play the wildcard).

    I don't actually mind this format.
     
  18. J T Money

    J T Money Registered User

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    It's not going to matter who we face regardless of how fair it may or may not be.
     
  19. AlwaysSunnyInTampa

    AlwaysSunnyInTampa It's over 9000!!!!

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    I'm personally sick and tired of it and have been for a long time now. The regular season is completely meaningless if the playoff matchup isn't going to happen organically. The Atlantic is so weak right now there's a chance a Metro team with a better record than our 3rd place team is gonna miss the playoffs.

    Once Seattle is granted expansion (and I pray to God it is them for geographic reasons) the NHL needs to go back to a 6 division format and a 1-8 playoff seeding just like before the lockout. And if you're not gonna name the divisions correctly based on geography then go back to old names and come up with 2 new ones to go with Adams, Patrick, Norris and Smythe. Personally I'm in favor of Hart, Ross or Selke since the old division names are also that of awards.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2017 at 7:04 PM

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