One of the by-products of the new deal between the players and the league, which ended the lock-out, is a restructuring of the NHL divisions. The NHL is now made up of two conferences with two divisions each, instead of two conferences with three divisions in each. Which moves the Colorado Avalanche into the Central Division or as some remember the Norris Division.

The Norris Division was formed in 1974 and named for James E. Norris a one time owner of the Detroit Red Wings. The Red Wings won five Stanley Cups while he was the owner. Besides the division being named for him there are two major hockey awards named for him, the Norris Trophy awarded to the top defenseman each year in the NHL and the James Norris Memorial Trophy awarded to the top International league goalie each year. He is also a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame. The Norris Division existed for 19 seasons until some brain child came up with the idea to change the division names and the Central Division was born.

 

The division has always been a tough one with a lot of heavy hitters and slick goal scorers’. That doesn’t look to change under the new alignment. The new Central Division is now made up of seven teams and really there is no easy win in the bunch.

 

Central Division

ChicagoBlackhawks

ColoradoAvalanche

DallasStars

MinnesotaWild

NashvillePredators

St. LouisBlues

WinnipegJets

 

The Avalanche, Stars, Blues and Jets are young teams on the up-tick, The Predators are a good team with one of the top goalies in the league, The Wild spent a little money and brought in some top line talent and the Blackhawks just won the cup, so welcome to the Central Division.