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All hail the Central!

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With all five teams from the Central Division sitting in playoff position as of today, pundits around the MSM are proclaiming Ye Olde Norris to be, as the kids say, the shiznit...

Darren Eliot at SI.com:

Copycat ideals in sports are nothing new. If one team is having success doing things in a certain manner, others are quick to adopt those practices. Well, I don't think cloning is the issue in the Central Division right now, but it certainly makes a strong case for competition breeding excellence.

Ken Campbell at the Hockey News:

Take a look at the NHL standings today and you’ll notice they reveal tangible evidence of something people in hockey have known for quite some time – that after years of being a running joke, the Central Division is now the best in the league.

Edmonton, Anaheim and Minnesota still have a shot to knock one (or two?) Central teams out of the postseason mix, but at this point, it looks like we might have a flashback to the good old days, when teams had to face divisional opponents in the 1st and 2nd round of the playoffs before you met up with exotic squads from the Smythe...