Report: NHL to pause season from Wednesday through Saturday originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
The NHL and NHLPA have agreed to pause the 2021-22 season from Wednesday, Dec. 22 through Saturday, Dec. 25 due to the rise of COVID-19 cases in the league, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
All team facilities and operations will be shut down until Dec. 26. Players will return a day earlier than originally slated from the holiday break to resume COVID testing.
According to Friedman, a memo was sent to teams, stating, "Upon return from the holiday break to team facilities, no individual in the team's travelling party shall enter (other than for testing purposes) until they have a negative test result."
Due to prior postponements, this new update affects a total of five games, all scheduled for Thursday: Philadelphia Flyers at Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitals at New York Islanders, Dallas Stars at Chicago Blackhawks, Tampa Bay Lightning at Arizona Coyotes and Los Angeles Kings at Vegas Golden Knights.
As of now, only two more games will take place before the break: Capitals at Flyers on Tuesday at 7 p.m. ET and Lightning at Golden Knights on Tuesday at 10 p.m.
Complete coverage of the Philadelphia Flyers and their rivals in the NHL from NBC Sports Philadelphia.
The NHL announced on Sunday it was suspending cross-border travel until after the holiday break, which caused 12 game postponements between Dec. 20 and Dec. 23. The league also said it was carrying on with the season and "the need to temporarily shut down individual teams should continue to be made on a case-by-case basis."
The NHL recently implemented enhanced COVID protocols, which include restrictions on indoor dining for teams on the road, wearing masks and social distancing in team facilities and testing on non-off days, until at least Jan 7.
With all the rising cases and increasing postponements, the NHL’s participation in the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing is in jeopardy. The league said a decision on participation at the Games would be coming this week.