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Wake With Elias- June 15, 2020: Canadian Cities Not Out Of The Running To Host NHL Playoff Games (Yet)

There’s still a chance that Vancouver, Edmonton or Toronto could be a Hub City for the upcoming return of NHL hockey, but that all hinges of support from the Canadian government.

NHL: New York Islanders at Vancouver Canucks Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

So with a response from the Canadian government on an alteration to its 14 day quarantine rule expected as early as today, we should know if Toronto, Edmonton or Vancouver could join Las Vegas as one of the Hub Cities when playoff hockey resumes. Given the way BC and Alberta are currently managing their numbers (though Alberta’s had some sketchy issues in terms of reporting as well as some significant outbreaks at food processing facilities and other places), they’re a better bet from a health and safety standpoint than Toronto. The problem with this is the NHL will probably want a location in either the Central or Eastern time zone for tv coverage. With the number of games that would be played daily, it might not really matter, as games in the first couple rounds would have to be staggered throughout the day in order to fit them in anyway.

So, with Vegas already being a bit of a bad choice because of the state’s COVID-19 numbers continuing to climb, which city makes the most sense?

As you can see on this map, Chicago seems like a really good choice, along with Pittsburgh or Columbus. And with the New York Post reporting today that the Eastern teams that will be facing off in the play-in round heading to Vegas, the 2nd hub will be the one hosting the Canucks-Wild series as well as Edmonton-Chicago, Winnipeg-Calgary and Nashville-Arizona.

Let’s take a look at some other things happening, shall we?

- Kevin Bieksa joined Sportsnet650 to talk about why he feels the return to play may not be the best idea. (Sportsnet650)

- Gary Bettman will have none of your asterisk talk. (

- Loui Eriksson is a Top 5 player (on this ranking of players who should be bought out in the off-season). (NBC Sports)

- Dallas Stars D Roman Polak has signed a deal to play in the Czech League. (Defending Big D)

- Former Canucks G Kevin Weekes on what the NHL and the game of hockey need to do to combat the lack of diversity in the sport. (Washington Post)

- Also, a look back at how much better Fox was at covering the NHL than NBC has ever been, as evidenced by the opening to the 95 Finals:

- Probably a good idea to just stay off social media today if you’re a Canucks fan...

And finally, since it’s been a while, I thought I would fire a Battle Hymn your way, even though there’s no game. I stumbled across this one earlier today, from a Youtube channel called Two Minutes To Late Night, which is basically a heavy metal late night talk show, hosted by Gwarsenio Hall. They’ve been rounding up a number of metal and rock musicians to cover some classic tunes lately, and their most recent one features Hamilton based black metallers Vile Creature joining members of Unearth, Black Dahlia Murder and War On Women covering a 1980’s classic: ‘The Warrior’ by Patty Smyth. Check out the previous shows on the channel here, and enjoy this one.