Those of you who were looking forward to some Blues/Wild divisional battles next season will have to hold your horses. The NHLPA, led by former MLBPA head Donald Fehr, killed the plan. Why? Because apparently the NHL did not give the players enough information about travel distances and the like to get the players to approve the plan.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. “Travel distances? But don’t the Blues have to go to California twice a year, and then Western Canada twice a year as it stands now?” Why yes, yes they do. But there are other teams, such as the Dallas Stars and Winnipeg Jets (and the Jets’ fellow Southeast Division teams) who would prefer to be in the same division with teams that are actually geographically located near each other.
So, instead of a Detroit (or Columbus) for Winnipeg switch, which would have left the rest of the status quo unchanged, the NHL decided to totally re-do the whole map, sequester the two Floridian teams, and make life even easier for Eastern Conference teams in general, while the grueling travel in the West doesn’t change for anyone.