New York Rangers may begin season mid-January (Report)

Jan 19, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin (31) watches from the bench with teammates during the last seconds of the third period against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

New York Rangers fans may finally get to see the team play a meaningful hockey game since the summer via a report by the New York Post’s Larry Brooks.

Despite a financial impasse between the NHL and NHLPA, Brooks wrote on Sunday morning that the January 1 start date is pretty much off the table but a mid-January start date is being looked at.

“The league has moved off its Jan. 1 start date and is now targeting Jan. 15 for a schedule of up to 56 games.”

Should the NHL want to start on Jan. 15, discussions this upcoming week would need to be substantial and include the escrow/deferment payment debate that is one of the reasons the league is not going with its original plan.

Most states have different quarantine requirements with the coronavirus spiking all across the country. Players have would be required to return to their home cities and at the very least self-isolate for 10 days while also taking Covid- 19 tests.

A second situation reported by Brooks would have the season start playing 48 games with a Feb. 1 start date.

The Rangers players who are overseas currently will probably be called back to New York by the last week of December in order for them to attend training camp which at this time has yet to be scheduled.

Chaos

Added to the chaos of beginning the 2020-2021 season, is the question of where the games will be played. It’s already obvious a realignment will need to be conducted since all of the teams based out of Canada would need to be in one division and play only that country.

Hub cities or hub divisions, limited travel, what to do when a player or a team has an outbreak of the virus, along with rescheduling of games at times will all need to be agreed upon prior to any announcements of a start date for the NHL.

The good news that comes out of the road map of questions with little answers is at least all parties involved are talking about playing games.

With that bit of good news, Rangers fans may soon be able to circle the calendar to indicate the first time they get to see Alexis Lafreniere don his #13 for the first time.

 

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