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Some NHL owners still want expanded playoffs

The NHL has had a 16-team playoff format since 1980, but some owners want to see an expanded playoff in a league that now has 31 teams and will add Seattle as a 32nd team in 2021. The NHL had 21 teams in the 1979-80 season when the league first had a 16-team playoff.

Sportsnet’s Hockey Night in Canada program reported Saturday that a number of team would like to see an expanded Stanley Cup Playoffs.

“A number of governors are still interested in seeing an expanded playoff format,” Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston reported. “And as we’ve talked about in previous weeks, it’s not something that commissioner Gary Bettman is in favour of, but these owners don’t seem to want to go away on this idea.”

Proposals for an expanded post-season vary but all would involve some sort of play-off between lower seeded teams before beginning the traditional 16-team bracket.