SUN Hockey Pool

Sweet 16 Is Back

AL STRACHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 12:31 PM ET

NEW YORK -- Traditionalists can rest. The NHL's playoff structure will remain unchanged.

For now.

The proposal to admit 20 teams to the National Hockey League playoffs has been deferred for at least a year.

The recommendation, one of many circulated in June by the league's executive vice-president for hockey-related matters, Colin Campbell, was that the seventh-place through 10th-place finishers in each conference would stage a best-of-three playoff.

The 16-team playoffs with best-of-seven series would start a week after the conclusion of the regular season.

But because the NHL governors have agreed to league participation in the Turin Olympics in February, it was decided that a further extension of the 2005-06 season was not a good idea.

But in general, the governors are in favour of the concept and will almost certainly agree to implement it for the 2006-07 season.


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