Could a 24-Team Playoff Format Work for the NHL?

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As NHL fans are waiting on whether or not the league will return back to normalcy, reports have surfaced that the league could be looking to potentially having a 24-team playoff format in deciding the winner for the Stanley Cup. Senior writer of the Hockey News Matt Larkin breaks down the likelihood of the new postseason being implemented.

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Robin Lundberg: If and when major sports leagues resume, they may need to be flexible. And that includes the NHL. For more, I'm joined by Matt Larkin, senior writer for the Hockey News. Now, Matt, I understand that the NHL could be looking at a 2014 playoff format based on conferences. What have you heard? 

Matt Larkin: That seems to be the format that's being voted on right now. The NHLPA reportedly could be finalizing it by the time we reached the weekend and we would see 24 teams in total, we'd see seeds one to eight playing a round-robin to determine seeding for the next round. And you've got your nine to twenty-four teams battling it out play in the first play in series in NHL history to determine who makes the round of 16. Once you get that round of 16, then it's going to be a traditional playoff. 16 teams, best of seven. 

Robin Lundberg: You know, it's interesting. Could the change in format, if you will, add some extra dramatics for fans, especially because sports have been gone for so long?

Matt Larkin: I think so. And I think that is the glass half full way to look at this. It's completely unprecedented and it would be completely memorable. Some people are trying to be detractors. They want to say it would be unfair because certain teams that are barely in the playoff race would be allowed into this tournament like Chicago or Montreal. If you get hot Carrie practices, Montreal's go. If you get hot, go on and run. And people think, oh, my God, what if a team that was barely in the race and to placing the Stanley Cup? Well, I think it's a catch 22 because these teams are so bad that they don't deserve to be here. Then they should be easy to beat. Shouldn't that.

Robin Lundberg: I guess that's a pretty good argument, right? I mean, it's the same thing that's come up in the NBA, people talking about Asterix and the like. I think we all just want our sports back in some playoff would be a good way to start as quickly as possible. Matt, appreciate your time, as always. 

Matt Larkin: Absolutely.