We’re getting closer to hockey. After putting the league on pause in mid-March due to the growing COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, the NHL and the NHLPA have been trying to figure out if and when the league should return. As May came to an end, the league announced it’s Return To Play plan that included a 24 team playoff and a reconfigured NHL Draft Lottery. While there are still a mountain of details to figure out, like where the two hub cities should be and whether its even safe enough to come back, the NHL and NHLPA announced this morning that Phase 3, the opening of training camps, will take place on July 10th.
This July 10th date not only sets the opening for the playoffs in mid-August but it also gives players overseas time to get back to the United States and Canada and to properly self-isolate for 14 days. This is a vital step that the players have to take before they all gather together to get back into some semblance of game shape.
There is still a long, bumpy road ahead but this is a big step forward to getting the NHL back on the ice to award the 2019-20 Stanley Cup.