The National Hockey League is gearing up for a return. I can feel it. Maybe you can, too. The momentum towards the NHL return to play is palpable, as the NHL and NHLPA discuss the issues daily. After speaking with colleagues and league sources, there is enough optimism that you and I can begin looking ahead to the conclusion of the Pittsburgh Penguins 2019-20 season.
In fact, you may see far more games in Pittsburgh than just the Penguins. Eight or more teams could be quarantined in local hotels, and PPG Paints Arena is on the shortlist of NHL cities to host quarantined games.
Actually, that might be hell for a lot of us, knowing hockey is being played in our city but not being able to enter the arena to watch it.
First: read the scoop. The June draft is coming. Our boys at Boston Hockey Now have it covered.
8.7 Penguins and NHL One-Timers
1. I like Pittsburgh as a host city, but I don’t like it as much as others. We’re more cramped and closer together than other NHL cities under consideration. Allegheny County has a fantastically low infection rate in part because no one leaves Pittsburgh. You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave. We barely cross bridges, let alone oceans. Though I have real concerns about being able to quarantine part of a city, rather than an arena district.
I like Columbus and Edmonton. Minnesota, too. Carolina seems like an easy choice, but reports differed if Carolina was a front runner or out of consideration. Perhaps Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon, who last week publicly rejected games without fans, is a strike against Raleigh.