NHL News: Update for 7/5/20

NHL News: Update for 7/5/20 Photo by Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Daily NHL News for July 5, 2020

NHL News and Updates

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Here’s your daily roundup of all the current NHL news that’s affecting the 2019-20 Stanley Cup playoffs. Today we’re looking into the ongoing contract negotiations and checking in on situations around the league. Let’s jump right in with the latest NHL updates. Check back all season long for free NHL picks and NHL predictions at Sports Chat Place. 

Negotiations News - Over the past week, the NHLPA and the league have been in heavy negotiations concerning the Return to Play plan and the new six-year collective bargaining agreement. According to reports, the two sides are close to approving a deal; the next step is getting approval from the NHL Board of Governors and the NHLPA members. There shouldn’t be any snags there, and the voting could begin as early as Monday. Let’s look at a few key components of the plan. 

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Schedule-wise, the next key date is July 13 when training camps open. After that, the players and staff will arrive in the planned hub cities of Toronto and Edmonton by July 26. Games would then begin on August 1. Any players who don’t wish to participate in the restart will not be penalized for doing so. 

There’s also the matter of the new CBA on which players will be voting. That new deal would run for six years and has limitations on the salary cap in place at $81.5 million until the NHL returns to hockey-related revenue levels of $4.8 billion or more. 

There are lots of little details involved here as well (mostly about money), but it seems the two sides have come to an agreement on the major sticking points. If all goes well, we should some big announcements early this week. 

Full Season in 2020-21? - With all the craziness surrounding this year, it’s difficult speculating on what hockey will look like next season. The NHL has been working on that however, and according to reports they’re aiming for a full 82-game slate in 2020-21. 

Getting a complete season in next year will be tricky—especially considering we haven’t even finished this one yet. That said, the league does have an outline. The plan is for the game schedule to begin in late December or January, with a Stanley Cup Playoff sometime in the summer. It would be a tight window to fit in, but it’s good to know the NHL is optimistic here. We’ll just have to wait and see how it goes. 

Positive Virus Tests News - As the NHL continues the process of opening back up, we’re getting positive coronavirus tests here and there from players as testing increases. One report out there today says four players from the St. Louis Blues and one member of the coaching staff tested positive over the last couple of weeks. The infections could have stemmed from a player gathering at a Missouri bar over a week ago. In response, the Blues reportedly cancelled Friday practice and closed their training facility over the weekend. 

As of six days ago during expanded testing, 15 of 250 NHL players were positive for coronavirus. We’re sure to get more as the restart date draws closer. 

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