Since the start of COVID-19 affecting the sports world, the NHL has seemingly followed one step behind the NBA. When the NBA shut down their season the NHL followed. When the NBA postponed playoff games the NHL once again followed. So now with some major news coming from the NBA about their 2020-21 season how long until the NHL follows? The NHL 2020-21 season has had a big question mark next to it since the playoffs ended. Hopefully, this news as well as all the other hockey leagues announcing dates helps the NHL move forward.
Other League Return Dates
So the big news is the NBA will be starting their 2020-21 season on December 22nd. According to this article from Bleacher Report, the players and owners have agreed to a 72 game season. With the NBA and NHL sharing many arenas both leagues have to be in communication about scheduling. News has also come out recently that the AHL plans to start their season on February 5th. The WHL and OHL have also announced start dates as January 8th and February 4th respectively. With all of these leagues announcing return dates, the NHL should follow suit relatively soon.
Another interesting bit of information is NHL players on Canadian teams are getting ready to go to Canada and complete their 14-day quarantines. This comes from a video posted on YouTube by The Hockey Guy. Click here if you would like to watch the video. We have also covered some other possibilities for next season’s format in this article. If players are already planning to complete their quarantines shortly, that could mean training camps are coming soon as well. With all the talk about the Canadian division heating up don't be surprised if an announcement is made in the near future.
Final Thoughts On NHL 2020-21 Season
While an early January start to the season is better for the league it's not so great for the Bruins. Marchand is rehabbing off-season surgery with a mid-January return date and Pasta out until mid-February. It could be a tough first month for the Boston Bruins. That also means the remaining free agents don't have much time left before training camps start. Obviously, it's going to be a shortened season but if the NBA is going with 72 games the NHL should be close to that number. Maybe we see a 62 game season instead of a 48 game season. Until then stay safe out there and LET’S GO BRUINS!
Featured image courtesy of Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports.