The NHL and the NHLPA agreed to a new CBA well before the Jan. 11 quasi-deadline set forth by Commissioner Gary Bettman. That led to speculation that the 2013 season could be more than the 48 games many had predicted for the truncated campaign.
But according to Elliotte Friedman of CBC Sports and confirmed by Eric Stephens of the OC Register, the NHL has informed teams that no camps can open before Saturday as well as a probable Jan. 19 start date and a 48-game regular season.
“NHL sent out memo to teams tonight saying Jan. 19 puck drop is most probable, however if ratification process goes fast, Jan. 15 still in play.”
Whatever the case, we’re looking at an extremely truncated preseason before an extremely truncated regular season – one that, at a presumed 48 games, offers little margin of error for teams that stumble out of the gate early.
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