Gary Bettman: NHL needs more info before it can make decisions on 2019-20 season

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman mentioned Tuesday that it will be a even though just before the league can figure out whether the 2019-20 frequent time need to resume.

“We are all going to have to wait until we have additional data, maybe in the upcoming several months just before we can make any selections,” Bettman mentioned in an job interview with NBC Sports’ Mike Tirico. “I feel proper now there is certainly too a great deal uncertainty. Hopefully, we’ll all know additional by the conclusion of April.”

Bettman informed Tirico that a conference call Saturday among leaders of the big North American sporting activities leagues and U.S. President Donald Trump, in which the leagues were briefed on the COVID-19 pandemic, failed to give clarity.

More: What Bettman’s conference with Trump implies for NHL

Bettman mentioned the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics to 2021 gives the NHL a bigger window to complete the time. He has mentioned he is looking at all selections just after pausing the frequent time March twelve, and he reiterated Tuesday that nothing has been ruled out.

“It is really mostly going to be decided what we do by how a great deal time there is for the reason that we have upcoming time to emphasis on as very well and the wellness of equally nations around the world (the U.S. and Canada),” Bettman informed Tirico.

Bettman emphasized the value of fairness, especially if the frequent time can’t be concluded.

“We have challenges about if we get to participate in the playoffs about who will get in,” he mentioned. “We have to deal with the lottery and the get of assortment in the draft, so the most effective detail and the least complicated detail would be at some issue to full the frequent time and then go into the playoffs as we ordinarily do.” Bettman, while, acknowledged that it “may well not be doable” to participate in the remaining frequent-time online games.

Transferring online games to neutral internet sites is one of the selections the NHL is looking at to keep fairness, in the function some marketplaces simplicity social distancing prerequisites before than other marketplaces.

More: NHL looking at North Dakota as potential neutral site

Bettman has been consulting with the NHL Players’ Affiliation, and he mentioned teams would have to have a few of months to get again into activity shape. He added the NHL can participate in deep into summer season.

“When we arrive again, we have to make positive that we you should not do just about anything to jeopardize the players in terms of their capacity to participate in and creating positive they’re in activity-all set shape and that all goes into the equation,” Bettman mentioned.

A further concern is how excellent the good quality of the ice will be in the summer season, especially in marketplaces like Arizona, Florida and Las Vegas. Bettman mentioned that is the the very least of his issues.

“We can cope with creating ice in any situation for the reason that our structures are just that excellent and our ice-creating abilities are just that excellent. Ice will never be a factor,” he informed Tirico.

When sporting activities are authorized return, Bettman mentioned, the league will be all set to go, with wellness staying its primary emphasis.

“When we get the prospect to participate in on some foundation, then we’ll be ready to execute whatever helps make the most perception less than the situation at the time,” he mentioned. “Our initially emphasis is holding everybody wholesome and harmless, and we want to get again to playing for our enthusiasts and for the really like of the activity as before long as it helps make perception and it’s harmless to do so.”