Just because the sports world somehow navigated the 2019-2020 season, doesn’t mean they’ve got the 2020-2021 season figured out.
One of the possibilities the National Hockey League is reportedly considering when it comes to combating strict coronavirus protocols, involves the creation of an all-Canadian division. Such an arrangement would keep the Canadian teams in Canada and the American teams in America.
Yet another possibility, according to Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston, is that all NHL teams could play all of their games in the United States.
According to Johnston, the league would likely opt to play all games in the U.S. if they can’t figure out the all-Canadian division in time for the season to start.
“However, the plan requires approval from health authorities in Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta, and British Columbia. They need to be comfortable with the league’s protocols, which have been an ongoing point of discussion with the NHL Players’ Association,” Johnston explained.
TSN’s Pierre LeBrun also touched on the need for additional realignment if the Canadian division doesn’t materialize.
Probably obvious but a league source confirms that if the 7 Canadian teams end up having to play in the U.S., the all-Canadian division is likely gone and more realignment changes would be necessary. But the hope remains the 7 Cdn teams can play in Canada in the same division.
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) December 17, 2020
The league’s targeted return date is January 13th.