Canceling the 2019-20 NHL season without awarding the Stanley Cup is not something commissioner Gary Bettman is “even considering” according to Curtis Pashelka of The Mercury News. Bettman was confident in his answers that this season would be completed at some point, even if it does appear more and more likely that any resumption of play would move directly into a playoff.
Other reports have emerged, like the one from Adrian Dater of Colorado Hockey Now, indicating that Arizona could be a hub to host playoff games at some point. That comes after the state’s governor announced that major league sports will be able to operate after Friday, May 15th. That very clearly does not mean that the NHL will be jumping back onto the ice in Arizona this weekend, but it does mean there may be a path forward for the state to host some games in the future—especially considering Bettman’s confidence that the season will resume.
- As for the 2020 NHL Entry Draft, deputy commissioner Bill Daly had his own update. Daly told Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic (subscription required) that they will likely have some news to announce next week on when the draft will be held. A June draft before the completion of the season, which at one point seemed inevitable, has lost momentum recently but is still an option for the league. Of course, the draft will be virtual and is not expected to be held in Montreal as originally planned.
- Though not exactly a league, the Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association has announced some changes in its own structure for the upcoming season. After spending a year touring the continent playing showcase tournaments, the PWHPA will now focus on five regional training hubs for their members based in Calgary, Toronto, Montreal, New Hampshire and Minnesota. There will now be try-outs for each training group (which will consist of 25 players) and they will be provided with additional resources.