Winnipeg Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff anticipates Year 2 of Winnipeg's existence in the Southeast Division to go much smoother than Year 1. When realignment was shelved in January, that meant at least one more season with the Jets competing in the Atlanta Thrashers' old spot in the Southeast, despite the geographical inaccuracy.
It complicated travel slightly for the Jets last season, perhaps even more so for their opponents. But it was also a learning process.
"From a travel standpoint, we're much more prepared. Last year was the unknown," Cheveldayoff said during a Monday afternoon phone conversation. "Where we may have come home after a game, we may stay. You thought you might be doing the right thing and maybe you weren't. It's just common sense. Not trying to push it."
The Jets also aren't pushing for resolution to the NHL's currently on-hold realignment plan.
"We're not sitting here counting the days," Cheveldayoff said. "We're just anxious to play the schedule in front of us."
But at some point, realignment will become part of this summer's CBA negotiations. Last week's negotiations focused mainly on economic issues (like the revenue split between owners and players and revenue sharing between teams); according to the NHLPA, committees met to discuss benefits, pensions and player safety.
Realignment isn't at the top of the agenda, but for fans eager to know how the league will be divided in the 2013-14 season, it could be the most interesting debate.
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