Trotz in favor of permanent 24-team playoff
Barry Trotz is a fan of the chaos.
The New York Islanders head coach thinks the NHL should implement this year's 24-team playoff format permanently.
"I think the league is so tight and the league has grown over my time in the league with the number of teams, it should be a heavy consideration," Trotz said Thursday, per Newsday's Andrew Gross.
"There’s too much parity in the NHL," Trotz added. "I think it’s something the league will consider for sure and I’d be in favor of it."
The NHL has used a 16-team playoff format since the 1979-80 campaign when there were only 21 franchises. After this past season was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the league opted to stage a 24-team tournament featuring a best-of-five qualifying round for seeds five through 12 in each conference.
Trotz's Islanders entered the expanded playoff field as the seventh seed in the East, and they hold a 2-1 series lead over the Florida Panthers.
The qualifying round has been a dream for hockey fans, with six different playoff games on the schedule nearly every day. It's also provided plenty of early drama, as both No. 12 seeds - the Montreal Canadiens and Chicago Blackhawks - hold 2-1 advantages in their respective series.