The idea of regrouping the seven Canadian teams of the National Hockey League (NHL) into a single section next season is becoming more and more concrete, judging from recent comments by Vegas Golden Knights owner William Foley.
During a show on the KSHP radio station on Wednesday, the businessman often brought up this scenario, especially when he was asked about the reunion between the Knights and their former defenseman Nate Schmidt, recently traded to the Canucks of Vancouver.
“Yes, but they will play in an all-Canadian division next year,” he replied a few times of the players in the British Columbian roster.
Foley was able to elaborate his thinking further, saying that the closure of the Canada-U.S. Border represents a problem that is not about to be resolved.
“It’s a big deal. I don’t think it will be open until January 1st. I really don’t believe it, he said. Canada is going through the crisis and it is grappling with an increase in cases, so it has started containment again. Winnipeg is closing. Quebec is experiencing a new wave. So I think there will be a Canadian section. I don’t think we’ll cross the border. ”
A return to early 2021? Not sure
Even though NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has mentioned that he wants his circuit to resume operations on January 1, Foley remains skeptical about it. The inability to accommodate fans in several arenas could be a drag for the league.
“If we can’t play in front of spectators, I don’t know if a lot of teams – including us – will be able to hold up. It will be very difficult, he admitted. You have to make a serious financial commitment if you can’t play in front of the amateurs. I think Gary Bettman will not want to force us to play in empty arenas. There will be another plan. “