The NHL has a new realignment coming in affect, and this probably is leaving many of the Avalanche fans wondering how it will affect our team. The Avalanche are currently in the northwest division with the Vancouver Canucks, Calgary Flames, Minnesota Wild, and the Edmonton Oilers. Only two teams made the playoffs last season, and the division is what some would call weak considering Calgary, Colorado and Edmonton were all in the bottom of the four in the western conference, and in the bottom six of the league. The new alignment is putting the Avalanche in a division with the Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Minnesota Wild, Nashville Predators, St. Louis Blues, and the Winnipeg Jets. Three of those teams made the playoffs and the Blackhawks were the only to advance past the first round of the playoffs. I personally believe that the division change is not going to be a huge difference, but will still be a positive move for the Avalanche, as there are many mediocre teams at their best in it, with the exception of Chicago. One positive of this move is the fact that will not have to compete with the Oilers who will become a very good team in the next few years. We still are competing with the majority of the same teams, minus the pesky Detroit Red Wings, and the Columbus Blue Jackets, and the addition of the Winnipeg Jets in the playoff picture though. I believe if the Avalanche can have a great opportunity to do well in this division if they avoid injuries, play consistently and with an improvement on the backend of the team. This is a lot to do, but when you compare the two western divisions the Avalanche are in the weaker one as of right now. In the other division, four of the teams made the playoffs this year, and two made it pass the second round, and one made the conference finals. Although it is, only one more team made the playoffs than the Avalanche’s new division, every team in that division has the potential to make the playoffs, minus the Flames. I do believe that the Avalanche have been placed in a weaker division, and this will positively affect the team. This new division however will not make the Avalanche a better team in anyway; it will just give them a better chance at making the playoffs. However, we will have to wait until next season to see if my prediction is correct.