How the NHL is Planning on Moving Forward due to COVID-19
BY: Rabhisan Saravanabavan
As the season for many professional sports is on pause due to the Coronavirus pandemic leagues like the NHL are looking to move forward in some way or manner. The NHL's pause is currently dating almost nine weeks and there are many concerns from fans, players, and the league on how and when players will hit the ice again. The first step towards a possible return would be to allow players to train in training facilities but this can of course only be done when deemed safe.
There have been many ideas floating around such as a potential summer restart with selected NHL hub cities and even a 16-team playoff format. In terms of the draft, an early one is being proposed before the completion of the season which many GMs are having mixed opinions on after postponing what was scheduled for June 26-27. Another problem that arises for GM’s with this crisis is the salary cap was originally projected at $84 million but is now expected to be set at the current $81.5 million or possibly less. This situation is especially unfortunate for the teams in cap crunch like Toronto and Tampa who will likely need to move at least one big contract to make things work.
Many questions remain for the NHL and other professional sports as we continue to see how the Coronavirus pandemic is developing around the world. This crisis could lead to some of the biggest changes all across sports and who knows maybe a January start date to the NHL regular season might be the new normal.