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Colorado Avalanche: A few updates on the 2019-20 NHL season

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Including a new extension for the CBA???

Colorado Avalanche v Pittsburgh Penguins
PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 16: J.T. Compher #37 of the Colorado Avalanche and Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins take a face-off at PPG PAINTS Arena on October 16, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Photo by Joe Sargent/NHLI via Getty Images

The NHL Draft

Seemingly out of nowhere, the NHL has confirmed that the 2020 NHL Draft Lottery will be taking place on Friday, June 26th at 8pm ET on all the major networks.

The league is actually going ahead with their idea of lettered team slots for the eight losers in the non-playoffs Play-In. So if “Team C” wins the lottery (their odds are listed in the press release), we won’t know which team it is until the Play-In happens and another lottery between those eight losers is conducted. If three lettered teams win all three lotteries, they’ll be organized by points percentage.

Seriously, this is like putting the cart before the horse and then making the horse skip sideways out of an Austin Powers parking spot. I know my analogy doesn’t make sense, I don’t care, we haven’t had hockey in forever.

Poll

Will you be watching the Draft Lottery?

This poll is closed

  • 26%
    Yes
    (52 votes)
  • 73%
    No
    (141 votes)
193 votes total Vote Now

Hub Cities and Return to Play

The list of potential NHL hub cities is down from 10 to six with Pittsburgh and Dallas being told they will not be hosting the playoffs yesterday. They join Flavortown and St. Paul as the teams who have been told they’re out of the running. That leaves Vegas, Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, Los Angeles, and Chicago as potential destinations.

There has been a lock of jockeying from owners, media, and local government officials in a hope of lobbying the NHL to come to their city.

Edmonton has been going hard with the tactic of selling Edmonton as a beautiful destination by making videos featuring cities and landmarks hours away from Edmonton. The Rocky Mountains are farther from Edmonton than the Grand Canyon is from Vegas for crying out loud.

Toronto has reportedly been told their bubble proposal isn’t contained enough and their owners MLSE have come back with a better proposal using the city’s exhibition grounds and home of the AHL Toronto Marlies among other secluded areas.

While TSN is cure Vegas and Vancouver are at the front of the pack in terms of setting up shop, Elliotte Friedman and Chris Johnston of Sportsnet say both have hit snags in their proposals as well.

Poll

Which Hub City is your choice?

This poll is closed

  • 43%
    Vegas
    (119 votes)
  • 21%
    Vancouver
    (58 votes)
  • 19%
    Edmonton
    (53 votes)
  • 9%
    Toronto
    (25 votes)
  • 1%
    Los Angeles
    (4 votes)
  • 5%
    Chicago
    (14 votes)
273 votes total Vote Now

NHL CBA Extension Progress

And in the quietest story of the century, it looks like the NHL could already have a new CBA ready to go years ahead of time (or at least a Memo of Understanding). The NHL and NHLPA have been busy during this pause to get both their Return to Play Protocol and CBA extension agreed upon. Both could require the full 800-player NHLPA vote, so some are wondering if the players will be asked to vote on both at the same time.

Per my understanding, the CBA extension would kick in next season and go for six years, ending in the summer of 2027. This would allow key aspects like a cap on escrow to be implemented immediately. Escrow takes a percentage of a player’s salary off their paychecks during the year. Once the season’s revenue is counted, a different percentage is given back (lower or higher than the original) in order to make the 50/50 revenue split work between the players and owners.

It sounds like there will be a 20% cap on escrow, meaning players will be guaranteed 80% of their salaries upfront. As the league is preparing for a major revenue hit, it was vital to get this done as soon as possible. The Olympics was another topic of conversation, though progress on that is unknown.

Podcast

Our At Elevation Podcast is back with a new episode. This week, Adrian spoke with Ryan Clark of The Athletic to discuss his approach to covering the Avalanche as well as how he feels the NHL is handling race relations within the sport of hockey. It’s a great episode and we are thankful Ryan took the time to speak with us.