NHL Abandons Regular Season, Goes Straight to Playoffs and Will Include 24 Teams

By  //  May 27, 2020

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NHL season has been postponed since march 12

The NHL will abandon the rest of the regular season and go straight into the playoffs with 24 teams instead of 16 if it is able to resume play, commissioner Gary Bettman said Tuesday. (ESPN image)

(ESPN.com) – The NHL will abandon the rest of the regular season and go straight into the playoffs with 24 teams instead of 16 if it is able to resume play, commissioner Gary Bettman said Tuesday.

“As we seek some return to normalcy, this is an important day for NHL fans,” Bettman said of the Return To Play Plan.

“Since March 12, we’ve been hopeful and optimistic that by developing all options and alternatives, we could get to this point. I know I join sports fans everywhere when I say we cannot wait for the players to hit the ice again.”

While the players and the NHL have agreed on a format, the NHL Players’ Association has not formally approved any actual return to finish the season. The league and the NHLPA also must still figure out health and safety protocols and solve other issues, including where to play.

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