Report: NHL, players targeting Jan. 13 start date

The NHL and NHL Players’ Association are finalizing a plan to start the 2020-21 season on Jan. 13, multiple outlets reported Tuesday.

The two sides are aiming to play either a 52- or 56-game schedule, opposed to the traditional 82-game season. They apparently have settled financial issues, agreeing to let stand the terms reached in a June memorandum of understanding that was signed as part of the collective bargaining agreement extension.

That leaves them to work out the details, which include schedules, COVID-19 protocols and temporary realignment of divisions.

The NHL board of governors and the NHLPA executive board must sign off on any agreement that is reached.

NHL hockey, puck
Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

“We are moving forward with the process of working through all of the issues that need to be addressed and agreed to, and that are obviously unique to playing a season during a pandemic,” NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told The Athletic.

The NHL paused its 2019-20 season on March 12 amid the pandemic and resumed over the summer in bubbles in Edmonton and Toronto.

–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)