I consider the 1996-97 CHL schedule to be the Perfect Season. The symmetry makes it easy to analyse and, eventually, model.
I have taken the schedule from that season and created several worksheets to analyse the distances each team travel distances. You can find it in this Excel Workbook. On the "Long" Worksheet you will find the summary information, I have copied below. of importance is the Total Distance a Team was required to travel. I also need to keep up with the Maximum "Rate" a team must travel for 1 game.
The rate is essentially how many miles per day ateam must travel. This is important because a 2000 mile trip to a game at first sounds rather extreme, but if the team has 8 days off in which to make that trip, then it isn't so bad. It is interesting that Macon has the highest rate for 1 game. They hosted OKC on Feb 6th, 97. The next game was the following night in Memphis, over 900 miles away.
The main reason I consider the 96-97 season to be the perfect season stems from the 10 teams, 2 division layout:
|Western Division||Eastern Division|
This symmetric alignment allowed for the scheduling of games in the following manner:
Perhaps the only way this could have been made better would be if Ft. Worth had been in the 2nd half of the alphabet so the league would be evenly divided alphabetically too.
After the 1996-97 season, the league went to 11 teams, thus ruining the even arrangement. Since that season there has never been such an organized arrangement, either because of odd numbers of teams or greater inter-division play for some teams (usually Memphis).
These later seasons will be used forthe future development of my algorithm, but the 1996-97 season with its symmerty will make a solid starting point.