After Gary Bettman announced the start of the 2020 NHL Draft, the league sent out a press release announcing that it’s pushing back the target date of the 2020-21 regular season.
The NHL is now targeting January 1, 2021 to drop the puck on the new season.
Per the NHL:
NEW YORK/TORONTO (Oct. 6, 2020) – The National Hockey League Players’ Association and National Hockey League announced today that they will target Jan. 1 for the start of the 2020-21 regular season.
Estimated timing for the start of training camp will be communicated at a later date.
The league was originally targeting December 1.
Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman first reported the news this morning, noting that the date could change against as the league tries to formulate a plan to play a regular-season during the coronavirus pandemic.
Hearing new “target date” of Jan 1 is being planned for by NHL/NHLPA. This does not guarantee season starting New Year’s Day, but replaces Dec 1 as the current target. (Potential training camp would be beforehand.) This could change in the future — but that is where we stand now.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) October 6, 2020
Recently, TSN’s Frank Seravalli reported that the NHL and NHLPA has initially discussed a hybrid bubble solution.
This hybrid bubble concept would include a rotation of two weeks in the bubble, followed by one week at home where players can regroup with their families, then rotating back in for another two weeks before returning home again.
The thinking is that each team would be able to play approximately 12 games per month, which is doable given that there will be no travel between games other than flying in and out.
The league is facing a bit of a time crunch as it wants to conclude its season before July 22 when the 2021 Summer Olympics begin in Tokyo.
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