More divisional play under new schedule

Updated: July 27, 2005, 11:55 AM ET
ESPN.com

The NHL released its new regular-season schedule today as all 30 teams will be on the ice when the regular season begins Oct. 5.

The schedule returns with a new format that has more play within the six divisions.

Format

  • Each team plays eight games against each of its four division rivals (32 total).

  • Each team plays four games against each of the 10 non-division clubs in its conference (40 total).

  • Each team plays 10 interconference games, hosting one game each against all five team from a designated division and traveling for one game each against all five teams from a different division. Here are the matchups for this season:
    --Northeast Division hosts Pacific Division and visits the Northwest
    --Atlantic Division hosts Northwest and visits the Central
    --Southeast Division hosts Central and visits the Pacific

  • Division vs. division assignments will rotate annually.

    Other notes

  • The new schedule has more division rivalries; division rivals played each other six times under the previous schedule.

  • The new schedule still has conference-based playoff format; each club continues to play 40 games against non-division, intra-conference opponents.