On Thursday, the NBA board of player representatives voted to tentatively approve the NBA’s proposal for a 72-game 2020-21 season with a Dec. 22 start date. That’s less then seven weeks. That’s quick, decisive movement from the NBA. The NHL on the other hand, does not appear to be moving in such a manner.
On Friday, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly informed insider Pierre LeBrun of TSN that the league is still targeting Jan. 1 as the start of the 2020-21 season, despite no meetings taking place between the NHL and NHLPA’s return to play (RTP) committees.
In lieu of the NBA news, the latest on NHL: Bill Daly says Jan. 1 puck drop “remains our objective.” But the joint NHL-NHLPA RTP committee has yet to meet (nothing yet scheduled). Though a source says top leaders of NHLPA/NHL have been in daily contact over the 2020-21 season.
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) November 6, 2020
It’s seems somewhat of a lofty goal seeing as that the NHL has been essentially idling in recent weeks, and no meetings have taken place between the two committees. It’s possible the NHL is looking to the NBA to pave the way to “return to play”, although that is pure speculation.
TVA Sports’ Renaud Lavoie adds that the league is hoping to make an announcement as soon as possible with a lot of work to be done in the next seven to ten days.
The NHL is still hoping to start next season in January first. League hopes to make an official announcement as soon as possible. It could take another 7 to 10 days. Lots of works to be done until then.
— Renaud Lavoie (@renlavoietva) November 6, 2020
The Stanley Cup final ended six weeks ago. If hockey were to follow the NBA model, preseason camp should be opening three-or-so weeks from now.
Deputy commissioner Bill Daly said during the general managers meeting on October 23, “We are evaluating a lot of possibilities and gathering a lot of data and we are going to take the time we have to make the best decisions possible,” Daly told Pierre Lebrun.
By Jon Sorensen