Report: NHL, NHLPA finalize protocols for season to resume

Sports

FILE – In this March 12, 2020, file photo, goals used by the NHL hockey club Nashville Predators are stored in a hallway in Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn. The Ottawa Senators announced late Tuesday night, March 17, 2020, one of their players has tested positive for COVID-19, has mild symptoms and is in isolation. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — The National Hockey League is getting closer to finalizing protocols for its season to resume in Edmonton and Toronto.

ESPN.com’s Emily Kaplan reports that the league’s Phase 3 and Phase 4 return to play protocols are all laid out in a 40-page document. It will now have to be approved by the NHLPA’s executive committee and will then go to a full membership vote of all NHL players. The NHL’s Board of Governors must also make it official.

While the original date to start up training camp was on July 10th, ESPN reports it will now begin on July 13th. If everything follows the timeline, teams would travel to the hub cities on July 25 or July 26 and games will begin by August 1.

The Eastern Conference teams will play in Toronto while the Western Conference teams will be in Edmonton. As for the Stanley Cup Finals, that concludes in Edmonton, likely in early October.

Within the protocols, it does point out that no player will be penalized if he chooses to opt out, and he does not have to give a reason for wanting to opt-out, sources told ESPN. Players have until 4 p.m. CT on July 7 to let their teams if they are not going to play.

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