The NHL and NHLPA have come to an agreement on Phasee 3 and 4 of the league’s Return to Play Protocol, which outlines training camps and playoffs to finish the season. They have also come to an agreement on a four-year extension to the CBA, meaning no lockout for the next six seasons.
Both of these decisions require approval from the NHLPA Executive Board as well as a full player vote. These should take the rest of the week but the league is tentatively moving forward on the Return to Play as we speak.
The full press release with all 48 pages of the Return to Play Protocol including procedures for health and safety are in the press release below. Most of what is in there can be found in the article posted yesterday.
The @NHLPA and @NHL announce the frameworks that will govern Players and Clubs in Phase 3 (training camps), and Phase 4 (resumption of competition).— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) July 6, 2020
Full Details: https://t.co/PXfLOvPRBQ pic.twitter.com/CEQ3P73xxh
The NHLPA has yet to vote on the agreement, but they should be doing it soon. Hopefully we have everything figured out by next week when Phase 3 begins.
The Executive Board didn’t vote on the tentative RTP-CBA agreement during today’s call. The 31 player reps will take a bit more time to look over the document before voting. https://t.co/jZN7t8SEU4— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) July 6, 2020
Without all the technical stuff, here are the important dates:
Tentative dates have been set for the NHL's restart:— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) July 6, 2020
-- July 13: Start of training camp
-- July 26: Teams travel to hub cities
-- Aug. 1: Start of the qualifying round
Early thoughts on next season, players can sign for European and other non-North American teams seven days after the new CBA begins and two days after their team is eliminated from the Playoffs (or were already out), which should happen soon. Expect a fair number of players leave for Europe as they expect their seasons to begin in the Fall and their overall COVID-19 situation is much better in America.
Of note regarding NHL players who compete in the restart this summer: Under the terms of today's MOU, they will be permitted to sign deals outside of North America two days after their team is eliminated.— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) July 7, 2020
Many European leagues intend to start up as usual in the fall.
Any player whose contract ends this season and isn't participating because his team is out or he has opted out, can sign outside of North America 7 days after agreement begins. But, if a player who opted out signs somewhere else for 2020-21, can't play in the NHL next year.— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 7, 2020
In short, hockey’s back!