I like this idea, but the format is so restrictive that I think you might run into salary problems, where some years can't field teams because their forwards cost so much that the team can't meet the cap. Unless the cap is really high, and then you will have some years where their team is a lot more expensive than most of the rest of the league.
If you found a way to add more teams, but keep the same flavour, maybe you could find a salary cap that all 24 teams could be around. What about, forwards from the 1st place team + the Cup winner (use the Cup runner up as the 2nd team if the same team won both the PT and Cup).
defence and goalies from the bottom 2 teams?
I love the single year, no twisting aspect.