better for the fans
less time zone switching
to me, each of those reasons is pretty tertiary. i will explain why:
better for the fans? who cares! its a pretty minor inconvenience. 41 games are at home at whatever time the wings prefer. 10 more a year are already against the east. 10-20 more are in the central time zone which is a whole whopping hour behind. when you consider the wings start lots of home games at 730 eastern, and many teams start at 7pm central, its a whopping half hour difference for the start times. is it really that hard to adjust your tv watching schedule for a half hour later?
less travel. IMO, this holds the most water, but let me play devils advocate as to why its not really an issue. the hardest part of travel is getting on the bus, getting to the airport, getting to the plane, getting loaded, etc. the EASY part of travel is the actual flight. teams in the east still have to deal with the headaches of getting to the airport and all that. the only difference is flight time. let me throw some hypothetical numbers in there... so teams in the east still take an hour or two post game to get to the airport and get loaded. in the east, their flight may only take 30 minutes. they still have to get off the plane, get their crap and get to the hotel or to home depending on the situation. so lets add an hour. so for an east team, it still is going to take almost 4 hours to get home. for a team in the west, they still get 1-2 hours to get to the plane, however their flight is 90 minutes, and then an hour to get home. so instead of 4 hours of travel time, its 5. and once again, the time on the plane is when you can relax, decompress, nap, etc. also, a lot of teams in the east bus around at times. that negates the time gain. is an hour on a bus really better than an hour on a plane?
less time zone changes. this really falls in with the first one for me. sure detroit is in the eastern time zone. but is 1 hour difference really all that much? as i mentioned, teams vary between the on the hour start and the on the half hour start, so that adds to just as much variety. even in the east, there would still probably be 1 west coast trip a year to catch whichever division was on the rotation that year. right now they play about 50 games in the eastern time zone; switching to the east would change that to what? 70? and most of those gains would just be 1 hour difference.
i guess to me i just dont see all the whining about how awful the west is. sorry for being long winded though. at least we arent dallas who has no division rivals within hundreds of miles...
i would think its best for the nhl to be in the west. it leaves 2 original 6 teams in the conference instead of orphaning chicago. it allows the det-chi rivalry to build as both teams are good for the first time in decades. it allows the west to be stronger because of the wings success. it allows western teams to draw better when the wings come to town. i just think there are more quality reasons to stay than to go.
- 55fan likes this