NHL Plans Tentative Dec. 1 Start Date For Delayed '20-21 Season
Dec. 1 is the "tentative start date" for the '20-21 NHL season, according to Frank Seravalli of TSN.ca. The last possible date for this year's Stanley Cup Final is Oct. 2, with free agency "starting seven days after the championship is handed out." Seravalli noted that the free agency interview period "has been eliminated with the new CBA." The tentative date for the '20 NHL Draft is Oct. 6, but it "must follow the end of the Stanley Cup playoffs and precede the free agency period." Training camps are "slated to open Nov. 17" for '20-21 (TSN.ca, 7/8).
WORK TO BE DONE: In Minneapolis, Sarah McLellan notes players are "currently voting on the league's return-to-play plan and an extension for the collective bargaining agreement." A verdict is "expected to be announced" tomorrow if passed. Wild LW Zach Parise said that players were "worried about the salary cap and escrow, the percentage of players' salaries withheld to ensure players and teams reach a 50-50 split of hockey-related revenue." Parise said, "We were hearing if we don't play, people were saying it's going to be 60 to 80 percent for the next year or foreseeable future, and I know that alarmed a lot of different players" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 7/9).
IN THE ZONE: In Las Vegas, David Schoen goes with the header, "A Look At Life Inside The NHL's Phase Four Secure Zone." The secure zones "include the hotels, dinning destinations, arena, practice facilities and other demarcated areas (indoor and outdoor)." Individuals who are "neither working nor staying at the hotel within the secure zone will not be allowed inside." Each club is "permitted a maximum of 52 people in the secure zone, which includes players, coaches, executives, staff and other personnel." Once players and staff arrive at the secure zones, they "may not leave without permission from the NHL." All members of the traveling party "will undergo daily COVID-19 tests, symptom checks and temperature screenings inside the secure zone." (LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL, 7/9).