What fresh hell is this: NHL realignment

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No matter how I feel about the NHL, I can’t stay mad at this guy. (Source: Burnaby Beacon)

I’m sure there’s some sort of valid reason for this based on, I don’t know, a desire to keep the NHL “fresh” and “relevant”? On Tuesday reports surfaced of the proposed realignment for the league: a return to four divisions, seven or eight teams per division, new playoff format, same number of teams getting in (the top three teams in each division along with four wild cards.)

My reaction is mixed (never mind that I still haven’t watched a single NHL game this shortened season. No longer bitter, just uninterested.) I’m personally fine with the altered playoff format and the idea of a few wild card slots. The idea of four divisions, however, falls flat with me. What’s wrong with keeping it at six? I’m old enough to remember when the NHL was a four division league, but it was a much smaller league than it is today. How do you foster an effective division rivalry when your division is eight teams wide? Or does that even matter in the 2013 NHL?

This is still a proposal and subject to approval by the usual suspects. But what do you think? Does this realignment make sense to you?