NHL notebook: Kings trade Gagne back to Flyers for draft pick

| Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013, 8:12 p.m.

• The NHL is proposing a realignment plan that would include four divisions and a new playoff format, multiple sources confirmed Tuesday. The Eastern Conference would include 16 clubs, with 14 teams representing the Western Conference. The top three teams from each division would qualify for the playoffs. The final four spots would go to two wild-card teams in each conference. Detroit and Columbus would move from the Western to the Eastern Conference, with the Blue Jackets joining the Penguins in the Atlantic Division. In addition to the Penguins and Blue Jackets, the Atlantic would include both New York teams, the Devils, Flyers, Hurricanes and Capitals. The Penguins would vote against any plan that separates them from the Flyers, Penguins governor and CEO David Morehouse has said. Realignment must be approved by the NHL Board of Governors and the Players' Association. The NHL would like to begin the format next season.

• The Kings traded Simon Gagne back to the Flyers for a conditional draft pick, sending the struggling left wing back to the city where he had his greatest NHL success. Gagne spent his first 10 NHL seasons with the Flyers but won his first Stanley Cup title last season in Los Angeles after a late-playoff return from a concussion.

• The Devils placed goaltender Martin Brodeur on injured reserve with a sore back. Brodeur, 40, must miss at least seven days. He's not allowed to play until at least Monday.

• The Stars traded right wing Michael Ryder and a third-round draft pick to the Montreal Canadiens for right wing Erik Cole in a swap of veteran forwards.

• Canadiens forward Rene Bourque will be out indefinitely with a concussion. Coach Michel Therrien said Bourque is not sure what caused the injury.

— Staff and wire reports

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