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After multiple discussions with the top hierarchy of the NHL Players Union over the last few weeks, the National Hockey League has scrapped any future meaningful discussions surrounding a return to play at venues in North Dakota, New Hampshire and any other true neutral site locations that were being mulled or discussed.
Those two sites in particular that were pushed by the NHL for weeks in private discussions, are said to be completely off the table due to little player support on such a scenario. The NHL has decided the league would just be wasting precious time in thinking they could get enough player support to resume the season at any neutral site locations the league has broached in preliminary discussions.
While any return of the season will clearly be at a select 3-4 venues, everyone involved is on board with that, NHL players are strongly in support of coming up with a plan that has the season playing out at actual NHL cities/venues.
And that’s where progress has been made between the two sides on formulating a plan to return. Any return is now going to revolve on playing at actual NHL arena’s. That has been settled in the last 72 hours.
The most recent conference call between the league office and the board of governors had more optimism than previous calls, a league source says, where the NHL outlined a latest scenario of being able to complete the rest of the regular season schedule or close to it in Want the Full Story? Get "Inside Access"
— There are five U.S. cities and two Canadian team venues being considered at this point. Who is being considered and who is not is based on data, accommodations to have 6-8 teams in place at once, but another factor the league is dealing with on who is being considered and who is not, is the lenience of state governments to allow pro sports to return near the NHL’s preferred timetable.
20+ NHL cities are getting no consideration for all of the above reasons as the league hopes to have a plan in place by mid-May.
Owners were told this week St Paul, Raleigh, St. Louis, N Want the Full Story? Get "Inside Access"