Happy Saturday, everyone.
On Friday, multiple sources reported that the NHL and NHLPA have reached an agreement for a 56-game NHL season. The agreement still needs to be voted on by both governing bodies, however.
Quote from NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly:— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) December 19, 2020
``We have a tentative Agreement with the Players Association on plans for the 2020/21 NHL Season. The agreement is subject to approval by both of our respective constituencies.''
What we know regarding the agreement:
Believe there was only one switch from the divisions I relayed a few weeks ago. Dallas for Minn. So here's how it would look, pending BOG approval (if Cdn teams can play in ):— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) December 19, 2020
The top four teams from each division will make the Stanley Cup Playoffs. They will then play each other with the first seed taking on the fourth seed and the second seed taking on the third seed, then the winner of each of those will face off. After the three U.S. divisions and Canadian division (still TBD, see below) complete that, each division will have an entrant in the Stanley Cup Semifinal.
Tentative agreement between #NHL and #NHLPA (which requires approval) calls for training camps to open on Jan. 3 and regular season on Jan. 13.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) December 19, 2020
The 7 teams who did not make 24-team playoff can open camp on Dec. 30.
All dates subject to change. Scheduling not finalized.
Training camps will begin soon, which is good news for a January 13th target date.
Also, per Frank Seravalli of TSN, teams will host games in their own home arenas, wherever possible. The regular season would tentatively end on May 8, and playoffs would follow with the Stanley Cup to be awarded by the first week of July.
What still needs to be determined:
Canadian NHL team issue over health protocols with provinces still not resolved, per source. But hope is to resolve it by Monday.— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) December 19, 2020
The Canadian division is still not resolved, but all signs point to a division with just the teams from Canada due to risks associated with crossing the border. There are still different levels of risk in different provinces in Canada, so each province also has to determine if they wish to be hosting NHL games.
Remember, all of this is still subject to change in this day and age, but this is definitely good news.