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NHL 2021 - The "Regular" Season


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3 hours ago, RIPPA said:

Blackhawks Andrew Shaw - who is somehow only 29 - is retiring after 10 years as it was "highly recommended" to him by doctors to stop playing due to concussions

I had the same reaction - I thought he was 36 or 37.  

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1 hour ago, dogwelder said:

 

If this means we don't get Doc Emrick and Pierre McGuire doing games then this is a huge win.  Yes, I know I'm the only person on the planet that doesn't like Emrick's announcing.

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25 minutes ago, Tabe said:

If this means we don't get Doc Emrick and Pierre McGuire doing games then this is a huge win.  Yes, I know I'm the only person on the planet that doesn't like Emrick's announcing.

Um, Emrick's retired...

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4 minutes ago, dogwelder said:

Um, Emrick's retired...

Then I guess I won't have to hear him 🙂

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In all seriousness, this seems like a big win for the NHL.  This will boost their visibility on ESPN's web site and TV shows and being on TNT certainly won't hurt either.

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13 minutes ago, RIPPA said:

I already mentioned this in the AEW thread but apparently the games will be on TBS not TNT

That makes sense, I'm hoping they'll do team centric broadcasts on TNT & Tru when TBS has the Cup Finals.

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55 minutes ago, Death From Above said:

What's the "irony" thing that I'm out of the loop on?

The reason (primary or not) that NXT was moved off of Wednesday was, at the time, because of the anticipation that the NHL would be on USA

If it is truly on TNT - then that would mean AEW is gonna have to move

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Okay - here is what is going on

The actual Turner network hasn't been decided on (this is per multiple reports)

The issue is that some media outlets - like that Yahoo Canada story above - are saying TNT instead of Turner when talking about the actual company

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The NHL expects negotiations with the Canadian government regarding travel across the border could extend through the opening rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"It's going to be down to the wire," a source with knowledge of the talks tells ESPN, indicating a decision on the border may not be made until the first week in June.

The Stanley Cup playoffs are scheduled to begin in mid-May. The opening two rounds feature teams playing within their divisions. Sources tell ESPN that the NHL does not currently expect to implement playoff "bubbles" for the first two rounds, as it did last summer due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

But in June, travel gets complicated. Each division winner advances to make up the final four teams, which will be re-seeded based on regular-season record. That will include the champion of the All-Canadian North Division. Currently, U.S. teams would be prohibited from playing in Canada without mandatory quarantines that would be impossible within the postseason calendar, which will be formatted in the traditional 2-2-1-1-1 home game schedule.

Canada has a 14-day quarantine for anyone who enters the country, although it did cut it down to seven days for NHL players who were traded to a North Division team this season.

"If we can't travel in Canada, either as among the provinces or from the U.S. to Canada and back, we'll make whatever adjustments we have to do to get the playoffs completed. But obviously, as it has been, it's wildly unpredictable," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said Tuesday.

There are two scenarios being discussed regarding the North Division champion. The first is that negotiations with the Canadian government -- led by NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly -- result in the country giving teams a special dispensation to travel back and forth across the border for their playoff series. The second is that the Canadian government does not allow that dispensation, and the North Division champion would be relocated to a U.S. city for the semifinal round and, should it advance, the Stanley Cup Final.

A source tells ESPN the Canadian team's U.S. home will not be tied to the franchise's location in Canada. For example, there's been heavy speculation that the Toronto Maple Leafs would play their games in Buffalo, should they advance. Instead, the North Division champion's U.S. home would be based on the geographic location of the team's opponent in each round, to cut down on travel costs.

The NHL doesn't need much time to execute a plan on a U.S. site for a Canadian team in the U.S. Due to a lack of schedule inventory, several NHL arenas would be options for a Canadian team to set up shop. A source told ESPN that the NHL could turn around one of those U.S. sites for a Canadian team in around 10 days -- enabling them extra time to work with the Canadian government on the border issue, down to the aforementioned wire.

"Where we play is going to depend on COVID, obviously. We hope to keep everybody healthy. And it's going to depend on government regulations in terms of where we're going to be able to travel our players and our teams and where we can't," said Bettman.

Isaac Bogoch, an infectious disease specialist at Toronto General Hospital who has consulted with the NHLPA, said Canada is "not messing around" on the border issue at the moment, as the nation is facing a "third wave" of COVID. Two months ago, Canada started implementing quarantine hotels for international flights landing in the nation, and this week it stopped accepting flights from India and Pakistan as they experienced another COVID wave.

From a sports perspective, the Toronto Blue Jays have played their home games in Dunedin, Fla., and are expected to play more of them at their minor league affiliate's park in Buffalo, with an eye toward returning to Rogers Centre later in 2021.

"I don't think the country will budge on border measures until we're in the clear. When there are widespread vaccinations, hospitals are decompressed and community rates of COVID-19 transmission are significantly lower than where they are now," said Bogoch. "However, these aren't everyday travelers. This is a professional sports league with extensive resources."

Bogoch believes the decision on the North Division champion traveling in and out of Canada is less about COVID safety than it is about optics.

"It's not about player health. It's not about public safety. It would be about optics and ethics. You have the capability to have the American teams vaccinated. Everyone 16 and up in the U.S. is eligible for the vaccine right now. And these American teams have exquisite amounts of resources at their disposal: flying on private jets, safety protocols in place for teams," he said. "This does not pose a risk to the general public, let's be clear here. This does not pose a risk to the players or the ancillary personnel involved. This would be an ethics and optics issue."

https://www.espn.com/nhl/story/_/id/31346679/nhl-border-issue-last-playoffs

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Ryan Miller has announced that he is retiring at season's end

He will finish just shy of 800 games played (he would have to play in the Ducks remaining 6 games to hit 800)

He will retire with the most wins ever by a US Born goalie (390... assuming he doesn't get anymore)

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Jakub Vrana scored again for Detroit tonight (on a gorgeous backhand) - his 6th goal since the trade.  Unfortunately, he's also the only guy on the entire roster that's capable of scoring a goal with Bertuzzi, Larkin, Fabbri, Ryan and I forget who else on IR.  I'll give Blashill credit - as horrible as his teams are, as rarely as he holds guys accountable for poor play or decisions, they play hard every night and compete.

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McDavid needs 13 points in his last 7 games to hit 100 points despite the shortened season.

Now, I'm not saying it's likely, or that it even really matters that much. But...

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