James Neal (Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images)
In this week's online mailbag, Adam Proteau answers questions on the NHL's new playoff format, Andrei Markov's future with the Montreal Canadiens, NHL jersey colors and more.
This is THN’s online mailbag. I trust you’re familiar with how these things work, so let’s get right to it. Thanks to all who submitted a question.
Regarding home and away jerseys; who's supposed to wear white/color and when? I was under the impression home teams wore colored jerseys, and the visiting teams wore white. This was reversed however in Thursday’s game between the Penguins and the Red Wings: the Pens wore black and the Wings wore white. I asked the Twitterverse and the majority response was that Detroit asked to wear white. Is there a rule? What is it?
Rachel Katherine, Boston, Mass.
You’re right, NHL teams by-and-large are supposed to wear their dark jersey at home and their white jersey on the road. But the league does allow for the situation to be reversed on a few occasions each year – if the team wants it. That was the case last night. A Red Wings spokesman confirmed Friday that the team usually chooses a few home dates every season to wear their road colors, simply to give fans a different look.
Does THN know something about Andre Markov's future place of employment that the readers don't? Why would his name not be included in a poll that asks what player might be expected to finish his career with one team? Guessing he has been with Montreal at least 15 years!
Bill Beatty, Port Sydney, Ont.
When our editors decide to compose a poll, they’re limited in the number of names they can include. In this case, Markov is an unrestricted free agent this summer and thus is more of a threat (in theory, at least) to move on. This isn’t a comment on contract negotiations or a guarantee he won’t return to the Canadiens. But when there are others to consider, a pending UFA will get knocked down the list virtually every time.
How will the NHL playoffs work this year? I get the format in the first round, but I don’t understand how it will work in the second and third round, especially the third round. Do teams still play teams in their division in the second round, or does it then go to the old fashioned way where it’s based on seeding in the conference, not the division?
Tim Ryan, Lindenhurst, Ill.
The new format is a little confusing. In the opening round, the top team in each conference plays the wild-card team with the fewest points; the second division winner within the conference plays the wild-card team with the most points. If a wild-card team “moves” from its division to play one of those division-winners and winds up beating that team, it remains within that division for the second round. The winners of the second round then play the other divisional winner to establish the conference champion.
I was wondering when Future Watch will be released and who compiles the rankings for this edition.
Steve Akeroyd, Abbotsford B.C.
What does the ‘H’ in the Canadiens’ logo stand for? We thought it was for “Habs”, but Wikipedia says it is for “hockey”. Can you clear this up for us?
Bev Robinson, Sarnia, Ont.
That’s correct, the “H” stands for hockey. The confusion began nearly a century ago when the owner of Madison Square Garden, Tex Rickard, said it was an abbreviation of “habitant”, a word describing French settlers in Quebec.
Rickard was wrong, though. The ‘H’ was added in 1916 and indeed stands for the sport.
Ask Adam appears Fridays on THN.com. Ask your question on our submission page. For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, subscribe to The Hockey News magazine. Follow Adam on Twitter at @ProteauType.