Originally Posted by Stazy
I know the relegation system works well in Europe, but I wouldn't want to see it in the NHL. I think it would dilute the talent pool more than it already is.
I would love to see a relegation system in North America. Sadly, it'll never happen here because it would decrease the value of franchises across the NHL--drastically in the case of teams that are worth loads but never perform, ie. Toronto. It would be a natural way for teams like Nashville to drop down the divisions and for stronger hockey markets to see their teams move up.
But the absolutely essential improvement (that is also not going to happen) would be to make scheduling fair. It's bizarre to rank teams based on points at the end of the year when those points were tallied according to different schedules.
For example, Phoenix has to play eight games each against the others in their division: San Jose, Dallas, LA, and Anaheim. Of those, only LA is a weak team. But Detroit gets to play its 32 divisional games against St. Louis, Nashville, Columbus, and Chicago, all of whom are rubbish.
Something like a 24-team league with three games against each other team resulting in a 69-game schedule sounds about right. (Bottom three being relegated, of course.