The NHL announced that it will not resume its regular season until at least Tuesday.
The NHL and NHLPA agreed to start their holiday break last Wednesday due to the number of players and teams affected by COVID-19. The initial plan was to start the games again on Monday.
This means that the entire schedule of 14 matches scheduled for Monday has been postponed. This includes the first game “Battle of Alberta” of the season between Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames, two of the league’s toughest rivals.
The NHL said that “to give the League an adequate opportunity to analyze the test results across the League and assess the clubs’ readiness to play, the target date for the resumption of the game will be postponed to another day”.
The teams will return to training on Sunday and the NHL is expected to update its plans to get back in the game by Sunday night. The NHL recently updated its COVID protocols, restoring daily testing and on-premises masks for vaccinated players.
This brings the total of postponed matches to 64 per season. The NHL and NHLPA agreed this week not to allow players to participate in the Beijing Olympics in February, so the Olympic break can be used to meet a regular season program of 82 games.