NHL Owners Approve Realignment
The NHL's board of Governors says The Columbus Blue Jackets and Detroit Red Wings are moving to the Eastern Conference.
The board Thursday approved a realignment plan that would create more natural geographic rivalries. The new format will feature two eight-team divisions in the Eastern Conference, and two seven-team divisions in the Western Conference. Columbus will join Carolina, New Jersey, the New York Islanders and Rangers, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Washington in the new division. The top three seeds in each division will qualify for the playoffs. The next two teams with the best records in each conference will earn wild-card playoff berths. The new format will be in place for at least three seasons. On the ice, Patrick Kane netted the decisive score in a shootout, leading visiting Chicago over the Jackets 2-1 last night. Jack Johnson scored the tying goal for Columbus, which set a franchise record by picking up a point in their ninth consecutive game. The Blackhawks ended a two-game losing streak.