NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 13, 2020
A Bruins player tests positive for COVID-19, Las Vegas will reportedly be confirmed as a hub city for the playoff tournament, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: In a statement yesterday, the Boston Bruins announced one of their players had tested positive for COVID-19 prior to using the club’s practice facilities as part of Phase 2 of the NHL’s return-to-play plan. The player subsequently underwent two more tests, which came back negative. The player remains asymptomatic and all other Bruins players have returned negative tests.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: NBC Sports Boston’s Joe Haggerty points out this serves as a reminder of the challenges facing the league in its quest to complete this season. The Bruins also indicated they’ll continue adhering to CDC guidelines and the league’s Phase 2 protocols. I suspect the player will be under self-quarantine for the next two weeks.
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Las Vegas is expected to be among the two hub cities to host the 24-team playoff tournament when the NHL announces its selections on June 22. MGM Resorts International is reportedly keeping its Las Vegas hotels available for the league.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston expects that announcement could come before June 22. While some fans will wonder why the NHL favors a Sun Belt location like Vegas, that city has a suitable arena, training facilities, accommodation, and transportation within a closely-contained area that meets the league’s requirements for a host city.
Johnston also reports the league prefers placing the other hub city in Canada, with Toronto considered the front-runner. That will depend, however, on whether the Canadian government relaxes its strict border protocols to allow NHL clubs to travel to that hub city.
TAMPA BAY TIMES: Tampa Bay received some buzz as a potential destination when there was talk of four NHL host cities. Once the league opted for two, however, Tampa slid down the list. The city and Amalie Arena lack the space the league needs to bring 12 teams together.
CALGARY SUN: Mark Giordano, Michael Stone, Dillon Dube, Matthew Phillips, and Mark Jankowski were the first Flames to hit the ice in Calgary for small-group training.
NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON: Former Capitals forward Brendan Leipsic is reportedly working on a two-year contract with KHL club CSKA Moscow. The Capitals terminated the remainder of Leipsic’s one-year contract last month after his offensive remarks on social media about several current and former teammates were made public.
TSN: The Ottawa Sun recently issued a correction and an apology for errors in two recent columns regarding the Ottawa Senators Foundation’s decision to cut ties with the club’s ownership.
A tradition in an untraditional world – @HockeyHallFame will announce the 2020 class on Wednesday, June 24th at 4:30 PM LIVE on TSN, https://t.co/KTYMAArjx3 and @NHLNetwork . The meetings will be held virtually. @TSNHockey, @TSN_PR
— Kelly Masse (@KellyHockeyHall) June 12, 2020