Report: NHL Still Aiming For 82-Game Season For 2020-21, But December 1 Start Date Less Likely

According to TSN’s Pierre LeBrun, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly remains steadfast that the NHL will have an 82-game schedule for the 2020-21 season. However, Daly also told LeBrun that the previously scheduled start date of December 1 is looking less likely, with a start date of January 1 more likely at this point. The league was originally planning to start training camps on November 17 with the season opening on December 1.

LeBrun said on Wednesday’s Insider Trading that Daly, a guest LeBrun’s “Two-Man Advantage” podcast on Wednesday, doubled-down on the League’s plan to stick to an 82-game schedule for the 2020-21 season. LeBrun also stated that Daly confirmed that a December 1 start to the season was less likely, and that a tentatively scheduled start date of January 1 is more likely.

LeBrun also said that the league had no interest in holding an entire bubble season, where all games would be played at a centralized and sanitized location, which conflicts with earlier reports.

Video: TSN

Sportsnet analyst Brian Burke appeared on the Writers’ Bloc on Wednesday and revealed that a modified bubble plan continues to be on the table. The current scenario would operate four dedicated bubble locations, with teams entering to play a number of games, and then returning home for a period of time.

Other sports leagues have already transitioned back to a somewhat regular plan of holding games in home team arenas, but without fans in attendance. MLB, the NFL and professional golf have all returned to travel and non-bubble hotels for games. NASCAR has also begun letting fans attend events but at a significantly reduced capacity.

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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2 Responses to Report: NHL Still Aiming For 82-Game Season For 2020-21, But December 1 Start Date Less Likely

  1. Diane Doyle says:

    It appears the KHL has begun to have fans back in games.

    But for the Caps, there is now one new issue. If Metro doesn’t get more subsidy, it will reduce its hours on M-Th so that it closes at 9:00 p.m. which would greatly impact attendance by fans. Confess I dislike driving in DC enough to rely on Metro to get to and from games, especially during evening rush hour. (That would likely be the end of me as a season ticket holder)

  2. Jack H says:

    a bigger issue than the metro, is the antifa mess. There is no way I’m going downtown if there is a possibility of violence, and I’m not in the minority on that.

    … blocking traffic is not a peaceful protest

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