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NHLPA Approves Realignment

NHL players are officially on board with the leagues plan for realignment.

After discussions with the Executive Board, the NHLPA has given consent to realignment, to be re-evaluated following the 2014-15 season, said the unions executive director, Don Fehr, in a statement released Thursday evening.

In December of 2011, the NHL announced a radical realignment plan that split the league into four conferences as opposed to its current structure of two conferences with three divisions in each.

However, the NHLPA eventually scuttled the plan, citing concerns over travel as well as the fairness of the proposed playoff qualification system.

The leagues last reported proposal was back to two conferences Western and Eastern with four divisions.

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division

Carolina

Columbus

New Jersey

New York Islanders

New York Rangers

Philadelphia

Pittsburgh

Washington

Central Division

Boston

Buffalo

Detroit

Florida

Montreal

Ottawa

Tampa Bay

Toronto

Western Conference

Mid-West Division

Chicago

Colorado

Dallas

Minnesota

Nashville

St. Louis

Winnipeg

Pacific Division

Anaheim

Calgary

Edmonton

Los Angeles

Phoenix

San Jose

Vancouver

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly released the following statement following the unions announcement:

The NHL Players Association confirmed to us today that it has consented to a revised plan for realignment, effective for the 2013-14 season. Our next step will be to bring the proposed plan for realignment to the NHL Board of Governors for its consideration. We will update the status of the process as future developments warrant.

Related: NHL will address how expansion/relocation impacts realignment if it happens.

For more on this story visit: Jason Brough, NBC Sports Pro Hockey Talk



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