I was very happy to hear Red Wings owner Mike Ilitch say that the NHL schedule format will change after this season. I am not fan of the heavy divisional play (and it doesn't help when you're in the Central Division) and the fact that we don't see every Eastern Conference team each season much less at home.
"You're gonna be able to see a lot of teams," Ilitch said, implying that the division-heavy scheduling of past seasons will give way to greater diversity. "This is history. This will be the last year with this type of structure, I think."
GM Ken Holland will work to push for a change in the scheduling format when it comes time to vote on it this season. I don't know of a single Wings fan who actually likes the current format. I am personally sick and tired of playing the Blackhawks, Blues, Predators, and Blue Jackets eight times each. It would be bad enough playing any team eight times in one season, but those games typically aren't the most interesting ones to watch.
"It's been a hot topic for us in Detroit for awhile," Holland said. "Being that we're in the Eastern time zone, we'd like to be in the Eastern Conference but that's not going to happen, so we'd like to play more games against the Eastern teams and the rivalries we have with some of those teams."
Holland said the team would like to see the scheduling format return to the pre-lockout format in which there would be six intra-divisional games, opening the possibility to play more games against Eastern Conference opponents.
All I have left to say is it's about time.