The NHL appears to be inching closer toward resuming its 2019-20 season, but some players could be left behind if action isn’t taken soon.
Several players have contracts expiring June 30, which typically lands long after the season’s usual end in early June. But this season is different thanks to COVID-19, and with the league hoping to resume the season at some point, action will have to be taken to keep some guys on the ice.
That’s why the league is asking for those contracts to be extended through the eventual end of the season, according to The Athletic’s Michael Russo.
A source says the league’s “intention is to agree on a slide with the NHL Players’ Association, which would uniformly extend all contracts through the end of the 2019-20 season.” The deal reportedly would apply to minor league contracts, as well.
Players that could be impacted include Boston Bruins defenseman Torey Krug, Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby, Arizona Coyotes forward Taylor Hall and Las Vegas Golden Knights netminder Robin Lehner, among others.
Additionally, the league hopes to extend staff contracts also expiring June 30, especially coaches. Coaching staffs could see an extension through Dec. 31 “regardless of how far into the postseason their teams played,” sources tell Russo.
Sounds like the league has some more work to do before the season resumes. (But, you probably knew that already.)