Photo: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images
According to TSN, the NHL is targetting an August 1 start for the Stanley Cup play-ins and round-robin tournaments and scheduling phase two of the draft lottery just nine days later. Last week, a team that will lose in the play-in round (not technically making the Stanley Cup Playoffs) won the No. 1 pick in the NHL Draft, which is expected to be forward Alexis Lafreniere.
It was reported earlier on Thursday that the opening of phase three (training camps) was pushed back by three days to allow the teams in COVID-19 hot spots (Florida, Texas, Nevada, California, Arizona) a few extra days to prepare for the start of mini-training camp.
Each team will play one exhibition game before the tournaments begin.
Edmonton (Western Conference) and Toronto (Eastern) will likely be the two hub cities for the tournament due to the recent surge in COVID-19 cases across the United States in the past month. The NHL was hoping teams would spend two weeks of training camp in their club’s city and one in their hub city.
Families will likely not be allowed in the hub cities, according to Sportsnet’s Eric Engels.
The NHL is also looking at awarding the Stanley Cup in early October and holding an online draft in mid-October. Player contracts that were set to expire this week were extended through October 31 by an agreement between the league and NHL pending the resumption of play.
By Harrison Brown