Report: NHL Considering Expanding Regular Season To 84 Games

Photo by John McCreary/NHLI via Getty Images

According to ESPN, the NHL is discussing increasing the number of regular-season games per year from 82 to 84.

The league is doing so as a possibility to create more divisional games. This season, rivals such as the Washington Capitals and the Pittsburgh Penguins; Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames; and New York Rangers and New York Islanders face each other just three times.

The number of divisional games decreased from 28 per season to 26 after the Seattle Kraken started playing.

The change would allow the NHL schedule matrix to remain where every team plays in every building at least once per season. The preseason could be condensed to allow for more scheduling flexibility.

The topic did not come up at this week’s board of governors meeting in Palm Beach, Florida but will likely do so at the GMs’ meetings this March.

Last month, GMs were seeking a way to decrease travel and increase the number of rivalry games, including playing multiple games in one stop on a road trip if necessary.

The NHL declined to discuss this possibility, which would need to be signed off by the NHLPA to become reality. The CBA currently restricts teams from playing more than 82 games in a regular campaign.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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3 Responses to Report: NHL Considering Expanding Regular Season To 84 Games

  1. Anonymous says:

    Yes! More games please. Spread schedule out as well.

  2. Diane Doyle says:

    I’d be fine with 84 games. But if they included play-in series, would that make the season too long. Hockey in July (or very late June) is too much of a good thing. July and August are not really for hockey, aside from charity games and prospect scrimmages. With any extra games, I’d recommend starting the season in very early Oct or even late Sept. Start training camp soon after Labor Day.

  3. novafyre says:

    Fine with 84. Start earlier, not extend later. I liked the division competition we had in the bubble year and had already read that many players liked it as well because it meant less travel. Should also be cheaper. So any extension should include such modifications as well. More divisional emphasis, less travel.

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