NHL And NHLPA Agree Rules For Return To Play

The National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) have reached a cautious agreement on a  Return to Play Plan and Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

The agreement will add an additional four years to the current Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) term and will include transition rules and a new timetable for critical dates.

The following dates were set as part of the preliminary agreement. The 13th of July will mark the start of structured training camps, with clubs scheduled to fly to hub cities on July 26. The qualifying round begins August 1st.

The tentative agreement will now be subject to approval by the Board of Governors of the NHL, as well as the Executive Board of the NHLPA followed by full membership of the NHLPA. The corresponding review and approval processes will take place over the next few days, and no more feedback will be issued until those processes are complete.

Also, the NHLPA and NHL announced details of the frameworks that will govern players and clubs during Phase 3 (formal training camps) and Phase 4 (competition restart). The protocols can only come into effect after NHLPA and NHL ratify the CBA.

There are 47 pages of guidelines setting out negotiated health and safety policies in total. Each team is limited to 30 skaters and an unlimited number of camp goaltenders and a roster of up to 31 players overall. In addition to players , coaches and management, each team is limited to 52 staff per game town, and must include two trainers, a doctor and compliance officer.