LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – When the National Hockey League resumes play, it could be in Los Angeles.
The NHL Tuesday announced that when it restarts the season, it will be as a 24-team playoff, with games taking place in two hub cities, one for the 12 Western Conference teams and another for the 12 Eastern Conference teams.
The league identified ten locations under consideration for those hub cities. Along with Los Angeles, they include Las Vegas, Chicago, Dallas, Edmonton, Minneapolis, Columbus, Vancouver, Pittsburgh and Toronto.
It’s unclear which specific venues are being considered. The L.A. Kings normally play at Staples Center and the Anaheim Ducks at the Honda Center. Both teams will not be playing when the season resumes because their regular season records didn’t qualify them for the tournament.
The NHL has not provided a firm restart date. Commissioner Gary Bettman said the selection of the hub city will be based on factors including COVID-19 testing capability, coronavirus conditions and government regulations.
Each team will be allowed to bring a maximum of 50 personnel to the hub city, which includes players, coaches and staff. The teams will stay at secured hotels and will be provided transportation to the arena and a practice facility.
Last week, California Gov. Gavin Newsom reported that sports could resume in the state as early as June, but without fans in the stands.
California has slowly been easing its stay-at-home orders, reopening retailers this week to in-store shoppers and allowing houses of worship to resume services with 25% capacity.
It’s also allowed several counties to resume in-restaurant dining and reopen barber shops, although L.A. County has not yet received such permission from the state due to the high number of coronavirus cases it has.