Are the champions of the Prince George Rec Hockey League invited into the NHL playoffs?

It seems everybody else is.

The NHL may or may not return this summer as nobody really knows despite all the announcements that indicate the league is hoping to have the Stanley Cup playoffs with a whopping 24 teams.

That’s right an even two dozen as the NHL takes a page from the BCHL where just about everybody is welcome to the post-season.

Where would all the games take place with no fans allowed in the building?

The league plans to have two hub cities, one to host the Western Conference 12 teams and the other to host the Eastern Conference 12 teams.

10 cities are reportedly on the shortlist, including Vancouver.

That is Vancouver B.C. but maybe Vancouver, Washington is more realistic.

This is not hard to add up.

Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry and Premier John Horgan both claim they love hockey and want the NHL in B.C. but on the other hand, they are not prepared to give the players any special treatment.

“I would love to have hockey but … we’re not bending the rules in any way that would put what we have achieved here in B.C. at risk. I’m happy to see what we can do but we won’t be changing any rules that would put anybody at risk,” said Henry at one of her media briefings this week.

Naturally, whatever Henry says the premier follows.

“We will not waive the rules that are actually the rules of Canada, which is you require a 14-day isolation period when you’re coming into the country,” said Horgan.

Edmonton and Toronto are other Canadian cities that have been mentioned to host games but they will be out of the running as well, unless they can turn a blind eye, to Canada’s 14-day quarantine requirements for international travellers.

“If we’re not able to (change) the interpretation of the quarantine consistent with our players’ ability to travel in and not have to do a strict self-quarantine in a hotel room, we won’t be in a position to use any of the Canadian cities as a hub city,” said NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly.

By the way, Commissioner Gary Bettman also stated a hub city has to be in a place that doesn’t have a lot of COVID-19.

Well, that certainly eliminates Toronto.

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Are you ready for the Edmonton Oilers or the Vancouver Canucks to have the first pick in this year’s NHL Draft?

As ridiculous as it sounds, in the crazy year of the NHL it is possible.

The Oilers finished the shortened regular season with the league’s 9th best record (37-25-9) yet if they lose in the qualifying-round of the playoffs (assuming there are playoffs) to the #12 seed Chicago Blackhawks they will go into the lottery.

The same applies to the (36-27-6) Vancouver Canucks if they are knocked out by #10 Minnesota Wild.

There will be a whopping 15 clubs eligible to win the first-overall selection.

“The seven clubs that did not resume play and the eight qualifying round clubs that do not advance into the playoffs will enter the draft lottery,” Bettman said. “At the time of the first phase draws we won’t know which eight teams won’t advance from the qualifying round, so we have designated temporary placeholders with the odds that the collective group would have had.”

The Draft Lottery will be held on June 26.

Odds to win the 2020 NHL Draft Lottery’s Phase 1

TEAM PTS. PCT. ODDS
1. Detroit Red Wings .275 18.5%
2. Ottawa Senators .437 13.5
3. Ottawa Senators (via SJS) .437 11.5
4. Los Angeles Kings .457 9.5
5. Anaheim Ducks .472 8.5
6. New Jersey Devils .493* 7.5
7. Buffalo Sabres .493* 6.5
8. Team A n/a 6.0
9. Team B n/a 5.0
10. Team C n/a 3.5
11. Team D n/a 3.0
12. Team E n/a 2.5
13. Team F n/a 2.0
14. Team G n/a 1.5
15. Team H n/a 1.0

As most hockey fans know, there is a suspected superstar eagerly ready to go number-one.

Sure, it may be a remote chance but how ironic would that be if the Oilers, or some other team with a winning record, landed Alexis Lafreniere of the Rimouski Oceanic and the Detroit Red Wings did not.

More on the lottery right here.

If you are wondering the (17-49-5) Red Wings finished with 39 points, less than half of the Oilers total of 83.

While the reason for the lottery can be viewed as an enticement for teams, not to tank games, the spirit of the draft should reflect that the worst teams or at least those that miss the playoffs are eligible for the top-pick.

Common sense suggests that teams with better than .500 records should not have a shot at #1 overall.

A wacky year or not, the NHL better hope it does not come up with egg on its face in the Lafreniere sweepstakes.

 

FROM THE QUOTE RACK

Kristin Cavallari and ex Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler are getting a divorce. She finally looked at his NFL stats.

*Normal Chad of the Washington Post

Dodger Stadium has now opened as the largest coronavirus testing facility in the state of California and apparently can check up to 6,000 people daily. Of course, it could probably check more if people would start showing up sooner than an hour after the scheduled start time.

Comedy writer Janice Hough of Palo Alto, California www.leftcoastsportsbabe.com

A question was posed by a writer–‘Should teams keep a backup QB in quarantine?’ So what would they call it, The Bubble Squad?

*Contributor Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, California

Some 73% say Michael Jordan was a better basketball player than LeBron James, according to a poll of 600 NBA fans commissioned by ESPN. An angry Jordan reportedly wants a word with that other 27 %.

*Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times http://www.seattletimes.com/author/dwight-perry/


IN CASE, YOU MISSED IT:

A Detroit judge got into hot water for texting a half-nude photo of himself to a female subordinate. Hockeytown insiders expect him to get a bench penalty.

*Canadian comedy writer RJ Currie www.Sportsdeke.com

 

Hartley Miller is the news and sports supervisor and morning news anchor for 94.3 the GOAT and Country 97.
He also is the 94.3 the Goat radio colour commentator for P.G. Cougars home games.
His column appears Fridays on myprincegeorgenow.com.
Send along a quote, note, or anecdote to hmiller@thegoatrocks.ca