So it’s been going on for a while. It’s been close for a while. It’s pretty much the 11th hour if the NHL doesn’t want to delay Phase 3 training camps, so in the spirit of all of that, the NHL and the NHLPA have asked their members to vote on ratifying the Return to Play agreements for Phase 3 and Phase 4, and more shockingly, their Collective Bargaining Agreement that will see hockey avoid labour stoppages for the next six years.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) July 6, 2020
So tucked in there are three important dates.
July 13: Training Camps open
We can start giving you that preseason line rush coverage you crave.
July 26: Players need to travel to the Hub Cities
Everyone in Toronto holds their collective breath that the bubble isn’t breached.
August 1: The Qualifying round starts
We get to watch Leafs hockey again!!! Even if it is against the Blue Jackets.
The process to finalize the vote will take 72 hours, so around dinner time on July 9th we’ll start hearing about training camp rosters and if any players have opted out on the return to play. Assuming the contract will be ratified, but generally when it gets to this stage, it’s happening, and we’re just doing the elegant dance of formality.
So now we play the waiting game and to see what treasures are hidden in the new collective agreement. As for the return to play documents, you can read them both at the links below.