The rest of the 2020 NHL season likely will have a Canadian flair.
According to Sportsnet, the league is expected to announce it will resume play in two cities up north: Edmonton and Toronto.
Western Conference teams are likely to end up in Edmonton, with Eastern Conference teams in Toronto.
A number of locales had been in the mix when commissioner Gary Bettman announced the NHL’s return-to-play plan at the end of May, including Minneapolis, Chicago, Las Vegas, Columbus, Dallas, Los Angeles, and Pittsburgh in the US, and Vancouver, Edmonton, and Toronto in Canada.
The list was winnowed to five last week, with Chicago, Edmonton, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Toronto making the cut.
Training camp is scheduled to begin for the 24 teams invited to the hub cities on July 10, as part of Phase 3 of the NHL’s return-to-play plan.
The Bruins, who would end up in Toronto based on Sportsnet’s report, will participate in a round-robin tournament against the three other teams at the top of the Eastern Conference standings to determine the playoff order. Same goes for the four teams at the top of the Western Conference.
The other 16 teams — divided by conference — will play best-of-five series for the remaining eight playoff spots. In the East, the matchups are Pittsburgh-Montreal, Carolina-NY Rangers, NY Islanders-Florida, and Toronto-Columbus. In the West, it’s Edmonton-Chicago, Nashville-Arizona, Vancouver-Minnesota, and Calgary-Winnipeg.