VA
  • TGT on YouTube
  • About TGT
  • The TGT Team
  • How TGT rates
  • Responsible Gambling Advice
  • Contact Our Team
  • Writers Wanted
  • Content Disclaimer
  • Affiliate Disclosure
Contains commercial content
Billboard Left
Billboard Left
The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / The NHL Needs More Competition

The NHL Needs More Competition

Revisions need made
Publish Date: 06/02/2019
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa

Read/Listen to More Hockey Here

While the NHL was preparing for the Stanley Cup Final; on the other side of the world, Finland were victorious in the IIHF World Championship final. The Finns won gold for only the third time, with victory over Canada. Russia beat the Czech Republic in the bronze medal game. Well done Team Finland, and to every team that took part, you provided a nice distraction for those of us whose teams didn’t make the playoffs.

Therein lies the problem. Unless your team is in the hunt for Lord Stanley’s mug, there’s nothing really else for your team to play for. Sure, there’s the Presidents’ Trophy, but nobody considered the winner of the NHL to be the team that lifts the Presidents’ Trophy. The competition in the league is really just about who can win the biggest piece of silverware, or who can win the draft lottery. In the 1920s, multiple leagues competed to win the Stanley Cup before the NHL became the de-facto keeper of the cup. The trophy was considered to be the prize awarded to the best hockey team, not just the best in one league.

To draw my usual parallel to football (soccer), there are a plethora of club level competitions that teams can take part in. Aside from the Premier League, teams can compete internationally in the UEFA Champions’ League, the UEFA Europa League and occasionally the FIFA Club World Cup. Domestically, there’s the FA Cup and the EFL Cup, both of which are open to multiple tiers of football, including some semi-pro and amateur. Then there’s the Charity Shield, although nobody really cares about that.

It feels harsh to say, but the NHL is growing stale. Sure there are new teams added occasionally, and sometimes and lunatic owner might do something stupid/hilarious. But ultimately it’s the same teams playing the same teams for the same trophy. There are five professional hockey leagues in North America, but they don’t intermingle, and Uncle Gary is missing a trick. Of course only one team can win the cup, but for many teams that didn’t clinch a playoff place, there’s nothing to look forward to.

There are potentially four trophies a top-flight team can win each season, and they’re all separate competitions. Even teams in the lower leagues get to mix things up with the big boys. There are 20 teams in the Premier League, but 92 teams compete for the FA Cup, the oldest competition in football. Cupsets are real, big teams are often turned over by teams from the lower leagues. Imagine if that happened in the NHL? Imagine if the ECHL’s Brampton Beast knocked the Toronto Maple Leafs out of a cup competition? Twitter would explode.

Logistically it would be a nightmare, but not impossible. It would also require a big change to the existing schedule, i.e. less regular seasons games in lieu of more tournament games. Start with a competition between the NHL and AHL then expand it from there. Hell, call it the Bettman trophy if you need have to. Hockey needs something that brings hockey together, and brings new life into a competition that hasn’t really changed since the NHL took responsibility for the Stanley Cup.

It’s time to introduce a competition that integrates and unites every level of hockey, each team with an opportunity to face a different challenge. What could these competitions look like?

International

For the Champions’ and Europa Leagues, entry is awarded to the best teams from the top tiers of various different footballing associations across Europe. The nuances and exemptions are many, but essentially not every team has to play every stage i.e. previous performance can mean a team will skip the early qualifiers. This can translate to hockey. Take the best four teams from the NHL, KHL, SHL and EIHL (or whatever) and you’ve got a 16 team knockout competition. If you stick to a pure knockout model, then the most a team will play is four extra games, minimising travel time. Depending on success, the competition can be expanded to include other countries. Spread play throughout the season.

Domestic

The big concern about a domestic inter-league cup is the standard of hockey. The NHL is the best league for a reason, right? The top teams are often the teams the teams that end up in the finals, but not always. In 2008, the FA Cup was played between Portsmouth, who’d finished the Premier League in 15th, and Swansea, who’d just finished top of the third tier of English Football. In 2013 2nd place Manchester City lost to 17th placed Wigan Athletic. Wigan became the first team to win the FA Cup and get relegated in the same season.

What teams gain from playing in the various cup tournaments isn’t just the chance at silverware. it’s the added exposure these teams get as they advance. Where applicable; smaller teams often benefit from the TV and gate money that big games attract. Last year non-league Warrington Town drew Exeter City, a team four leagues higher, and beat them to make the second round. This David Vs Goliath tie piqued the interest of the nation and the game broadcast on national TV. The professional team from Exeter was knocked out with a with a header scored by a local plasterer.

This is the magic of cup tournaments, and something that both the NHL and wider hockey world needs to embrace.

Billboard Left
Billboard Left
Read Also
Which American Olympic Boxing Team Was the Greatest: 1976 or 1984
I think it is very little to no debate that the two ...
The Greatest College Basketball Team of All Time
Rating the greatest college basketball teams ever has been done many times ...
SI Sportsbook Promo
Come Fly with me: How the 1988-89 Chicago Bulls pushed forward to an NBA dynasty.
Find the best sportsbook to bet on the NBA Playoffs! Prologue: By ...
Esteban de Jesus, Roberto Duran y AIDS (1972-89)
Many of us dream of celebrity sports fame, but only cruel individuals ...
Michael Nunn and Iran Barkley Discuss Their Bout, Bob Arum, and the Four Kings
Mountains to Climb, Pebbles in Your Shoe “I always say that was ...
What is the Best Decade of Basketball in NBA History?
15Every NBA player and fan thinks that their generation of basketball was ...
Elmer Ray: The Humble Man of Hastings
"Men judge generally more by the eye than by the hand, for ...
Ranking the top 200 players in the NFL ahead of the 2021 season
This list isn’t based solely on performances from the 2020 NFL season. ...
The Forgotten Canadian Champion (And Maybe It’s Deserved): Billy Hawkins
As Mike Goodpaster and I prepare our popular Old-Time Boxing Show podcast, ...
Sportsbook of the month
SI Sportsbook - Get your Free Bet now! Get your Free Bet now!
Top Brands
Top Bonuses
Stake.us
Stake.us
Stake.us Review
98/100
Wow Vegas
Wow Vegas
Wow Vegas Review
97/100
Golden Hearts Games
Golden Hearts Games
Golden Hearts Games Review
95/100
Fortune Coins
Fortune Coins
Fortune Coins Review
93/100
SweepSlots
SweepSlots
SweepSlots Review
93/100
Stake.us
Stake.us Bonus
5% Rakeback
T&Cs apply
9.8/10
Wow Vegas
Wow Vegas Bonus
30 SCs on 1st Purchase + 4.5 SCs FREE
T&Cs apply
9.7/10
Golden Hearts Games
Golden Hearts Games Bonus
Join GOLDEN2000 for 2,000 FREE coins
T&Cs apply
9.5/10
Fortune Coins
Fortune Coins Bonus
140k GC + 400 FC
T&Cs apply
9.3/10
SweepSlots
SweepSlots Bonus
1,000 Gold Coins Daily
T&Cs apply
9.3/10
Latest News
Top15 Teams in College Basketball History
The Wolfpack became the first team since 1965-66 ...
Top 10 Hitters of the 1990s
Mike Piazza did not get to play for ...
Betting Tips
Our Latest YouTube Videos
Video: Froggy Talkin Sports W/ Ryan & Joe
Froggy Talkin Sports W/ Ryan & Joe
Video: NFL🏈 Prediction Show: Is the NFL Rigged? Conference Championship review
NFL Prediction Show: Is the NFL Rigged? Conference Championship review
Video: NFC🏈 Championship Game Preview: 49ers vs Eagles
NFC Championship Game Preview: 49ers vs Eagles
Sportsbook of the month
SI Sportsbook - Get your Free Bet now! Get your Free Bet now!
Find out what the legends have to say about sports this week....
Top Online Casinos
Top Casinos Bonuses
Stake.us
Stake.us
Stake.us Review
98/100
Wow Vegas
Wow Vegas
Wow Vegas Review
97/100
Golden Hearts Games
Golden Hearts Games
Golden Hearts Games Review
95/100
Fortune Coins
Fortune Coins
Fortune Coins Review
93/100
SweepSlots
SweepSlots
SweepSlots Review
93/100
Stake.us
Stake.us Bonus
5% Rakeback
T&Cs apply
9.8/10
Wow Vegas
Wow Vegas Bonus
30 SCs on 1st Purchase + 4.5 SCs FREE
T&Cs apply
9.7/10
Golden Hearts Games
Golden Hearts Games Bonus
Join GOLDEN2000 for 2,000 FREE coins
T&Cs apply
9.5/10
Fortune Coins
Fortune Coins Bonus
140k GC + 400 FC
T&Cs apply
9.3/10
SweepSlots
SweepSlots Bonus
1,000 Gold Coins Daily
T&Cs apply
9.3/10
Top Betting Sites
Top Betting Bonuses
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook Review
97/100
FanDuel
FanDuel
FanDuel Review
96/100
Bet365
Bet365
Bet365 Review
94/100
PointsBet
PointsBet
PointsBet Review
94/100
BetMGM
BetMGM
BetMGM Review
93/100
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook Bonus
BET $20 GET $200 IN FREE BETS
T&Cs apply
9.7/10
First deposit only | 21+ & located in VA | Promo code as seen| A qualifying bet is $20 or more | Min odds of +120 or more | Free Bet Tokens credited after bet is settled and expire after 7 days | Free Bet stakes not included in winnings | Please Gamble Responsibly - Gambling Problem? VA: CALL 1-888-532-3500 | Full T&C apply
FanDuel
FanDuel Bonus
No Sweat First Bet up to $3,000
T&Cs apply
9.6/10
Bet365
Bet365 Bonus
Bet $1, Get $200
T&Cs apply
9.4/10
BetMGM
BetMGM Bonus
100% up to $1000
T&Cs apply
9.3/10
DraftKings
DraftKings Bonus
20% up to $1000
T&Cs apply
9.2/10
Our Team
Mike GoodpasterAuthor IconJosh SchwartzSamuel TeetsMark Lewis
+8
Mike Goodpaster
Mike Goodpaster
Chief Editor
Author Icon
Christopher Carlson
Content Writer
Josh Schwartz
Josh Schwartz
Editor
Samuel Teets
Samuel Teets
US Sports Veteran
Mark Lewis
Mark Lewis
Editor
Simon Briffa
Simon Briffa
Sports Editor
Chris Benedict
Chris Benedict
Editor
Author Icon
Malik Zorrok
Author
Author Icon
Daniel Kornhauser
Author
John Raspanti
John Raspanti
Author
Author Icon
Buddy Gibbs
Author
Brian Coburn
Brian Coburn
Author
Peter Bonahoom
Peter Bonahoom
Author
Find out what the legends have to say about sports this week....

If you enjoy hearing from the legends of pro sports, then be sure to tune into “The Grueling Truth” sports shows, “Where the legends speak”

Contact us: [email protected]

Players must be 21 years of age or older or reach the minimum age for gambling in their respective state and located in jurisdictions where online gambling is legal. Please play responsibly. Bet with your head, not over it. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, and wants help, call or visit: (a) the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey at 1-800-Gambler or www.800gambler.org; or (b) Gamblers Anonymous at 855-2-CALL-GA or www.gamblersanonymous.org.

This site is using Cloudflare and adheres to the Google Safe Browsing Program. We adapted Google's Privacy Guidelines to keep your data safe at all times.

sdfgfdgcsdfgfdgcww
Move to Top
Close
Stake.us Exclusive Bonus
5% Rakeback
Promo Code
Copy
Visit Site
T&Cs apply, 21+
Payment Methods
Bitcoin
Litecoin
Ethereum
Dogecoin
Highlights
  • Social casino loved by Drake!
  • Play Plinko, Hilo, Crash and more!
  • Get Stake Cash bonuses every day!
Stake Originals
Dice
Crash
Plinko
Mines
×
Your Bonus Code:
The bonus offer of was already opened in an additional window. If not, you can open it also by clicking the following link:
Visit Site