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New Winnipeg Team Could Play In NHL Southeast Division If Atlanta Thrashers Move

According to the NHL, Winnipeg, Alberta Manitoba is a city located in the Southeastern United States, at least for next season. Multiple reports have indicated that if the Atlanta Thrashers do indeed move to Winnipeg before the beginning of the 2011/12 season, they would stay in the Southeast for one year until the league can figure out the best way to realign the divisions.

This is too bad for several reasons. For completely selfish purposes, it means this entire blog item was a waste of time. For hilarity's sake, it means the NHL would have you believe that Winnipeg, a city that is anywhere from 1,231 to 1,894 miles away from the four other teams in the division, is geographically equivalent to Washington D.C. But on a more serious note, this is worse news for the four holdover Southeast teams than the new Winnipeg franchise.

As Travis Huges of SBNation.com pointed out, whereas the new Winnipeg team can play all their Southeast games at once each time they visit, it's not as simple for the other four teams.

Of course, the Winnipeg team would certainly bunch their trips to the East and play several division teams at one time, but for the Southeast teams that actually play in the Southeast United States?

They'll each have to make three trips to Winnipeg each year, and since every team near Winnipeg is a Western team, they won't have the same luxury. This could hurt the Capitals, Lightning, Hurricanes and Panthers more than anything else.

This also is too bad for the writers of those teams. Oh well. Enjoy the travel, fellow scribes!