All the details about the realignment, from the schedule matrix to playoff format, came out on Thursday. You can read about it here.
And we have two questions/comments.
1. What will the divisions/conferences be named? Can't imagine the East divisions being named North and South. All the teams in the Atlantic will now be in the "South Division"? No way. We're hoping they bring back some unique names like the old days of the Norris, Patrick, Adams, and Smythe divisions, but it's hard to imagine that. Having a "Gretzky Division" would just be really odd.
2. According to the realignment details, the top 3 teams from each division make it, then the top 2 remaining point totals from either division make it (so one division could send 5 teams to the playoffs). The team with the lowest number of points will go into the divisional playoffs against the division champion with the most points in the conference.
And something real curious comes from that playoff format: Say the Penguins in Division A have the lowest point total and the Bruins in Division B have the highest point total. The Pens will go into the Division B playoff bracket. So the Penguins, who are in Division A, could raise a banner that says "Division B Playoff Champions." Confusing.