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NAHL Announces Robertson Cup Playoff Format for 2015

(This story first appeared on NAHL.com on January 6, 2015)

The Robertson Cup is awarded to the national playoff champion of the NAHL. The oldest junior hockey trophy in the United States, the Robertson Cup is named in honor of Chuck Robertson, a pioneer of junior hockey in the NAHL and youth hockey in the state of Michigan. Chuck Robertson was the owner of the Paddock Pools Saints when they won a record seven straight NAHL championships from 1976-83.

Qualification for the 2015 Robertson Cup Playoffs is as follows: Clubs are seeded within the four divisions based upon their finish in the NAHL regular-season standings. If necessary, the tie-breaking policy adopted in the NAHL Rules and Regulations will be applied to determine the final order of finish. 

 Regular Season tie-breaking policy

At the conclusion of the NAHL regular season, Clubs that have an equal amount of points shall have their final position in the NAHL standings determined by applying the following tie breaking procedures:

A. Most wins during the regular season.

B. Head to head competition during the regular season.

C. Goal differential in head to head competition during the regular season.

D. Total goal differential during the regular season.

E. Coin flip.

 

Play-in Series (South Division Only, Best of 3)

Clubs within the South Division will be seeded based upon their finish in the NAHL regular-season standings. 

The Club seeded third in the South Division will compete in a best-of-three series against the sixth seeded Club in the South Division. The Club seeded fourth the South Division will compete in a best-of- three-series against the Club seeded fifth in the South Division. The Clubs seeded one and two in the South Division shall receive a bye into the division semi-finals.

The South Division Play-in Series may begin no earlier than Thursday, April 2, 2015 and must conclude no later than Monday, April 6, 2015.

Clubs shall cooperate to schedule play in series competition. The Club seeded higher in each division play in series has the right to host two games and the lower seeded Club has the right to host one game in accordance with the schedule set forth below:

Clubs separated by a distance of over 300 miles: If the Clubs facing each other in a play in series are separated by a distance greater than 300 miles, then the top seeded Club shall host games 1 and 2, and the lower seeded club shall host game 3 (if necessary).

Clubs separated by a distance of 300 miles or less: If the Clubs facing each other in a play in series are separated by a distance of 300 miles or less, then the top seeded Club shall host game 1, the lower seeded Club shall host game 2, and the top seeded club shall host game 3 (if necessary).

The first Club to win two games in the play in series will be declared the winner of the series and advance to the South Division semifinals. The first Club to lose two games in the play in series shall be eliminated from further playoff competition. 

 

Division Semifinals (Best of 5)

The Club seeded first in each division will compete in a best-of-five series with the fourth seeded Club in the same division. The Club seeded second in each division will compete in a best-of-five-series against the Club seeded third in the same division.

In the Central, North and Midwest Divisions, the Division Semi-Finals may begin no earlier than Thursday, April 2, 2015 and must conclude no later than Monday, April 19, 2015. In the South Division, the Division Semi-Finals may begin no earlier than Thursday, April 9, 2015 and must conclude no later than Monday, April 20, 2015

Clubs shall cooperate to schedule division semifinal series competition. The Club seeded higher in each division semifinal series has the right to host up to three games in Round 1, and the Club seeded lower in each division semifinal series must be able to host at least two games.

The first Club to win three games in a division semifinal series will be declared the winner of the series and advance to the next round of playoff competition. The first Club to lose three games in a division semifinal series shall be eliminated from further playoff competition.

 

Division Finals (Best of 5)

The two Clubs in each division that won a division semifinal series shall compete in a best-of-five series against each other.

The Division finals may begin no earlier than Thursday, April 23, 2015 and conclude no later than Monday, May 4, 2015.

Clubs shall cooperate to schedule division final series competition. The higher seeded Club will have the right to host up to three games. The lower seeded Club must be able to host a minimum of two games.

The first Club to win three games in a division final series will be declared the winner of the series and advance to the Robertson Cup Semi-Final round. The first Club to lose three games in a division final series will be eliminated from further playoff competition.

 

Robertson Cup Semi-Finals (Best of 3)

The four remaining teams shall be seeded 1-4 based upon their finish in the NAHL regular-season standings. If necessary, the tie-breaking policy adopted in the NAHL Rules and Regulations will be applied to determine the final order of finish. The Club seeded first will compete in a best-of-three series with the fourth seeded Club. The Club seeded second will compete in a best-of-three-series against the Club seeded third.

The Robertson Cup Semi-Finals may begin no earlier than Thursday, May 7, 2015 and shall conclude no later than Monday, May 11, 2015.

The higher seeded team will host all three games. The first club to win two games in the Robertson Cup Semi-Final series will be declared the winner and advance to the Robertson Cup Finals. The first club to lose two games in the Robertson Cup Semi-Final series will be eliminated from further playoff competition.

 

Robertson Cup Finals (Best of 3)

The two winners of the Robertson Cup Semi-Final series will advance to the Robertson Cup Finals and will be seeded #1 or #2 based upon their finish in the NAHL regular-season standings. If necessary, the tie-breaking policy adopted in the NAHL Rules and Regulations will be applied to determine the final order of finish.

The Robertson Cup Finals may begin no earlier than Thursday, May 14, 2015 and shall conclude no later than Monday, May 18, 2015.

The higher seeded team will host all three games.

The first Club to win two games in a Robertson Cup Finals will be declared the winner of the Robertson Cup National Championship.