UPDATE: An update to our story below about a potential all-Canadian division in the NHL next season.
The NHL had reportedly been planning an all-Canadian division to get around quarantining regulations in Canada that would prevent American teams from travelling across the border to play Canadian teams. Well... throw that all out the window because the Canadian government is reportedly considering getting rid of the 14 day quarantine period that's currently in place for international travellers in favour of an COVID-19 test at Canadian airports.
Check it out:
In case you missed it, Vegas Golden Knights owner Bill Foley made a bit of an "oopsie" while on the Vegas Hockey Hotline podcast earlier this week.
When discussing the trade that sent former Knights defenseman Nate Schmidt to the Vancouver Canucks, Foley was asked if the deal could come back to hurt his team next season. Foley's response?
"Yeah, but they're going to be in the Canadian division."
Um... excuse me!?
We've heard rumblings for awhile now that the NHL is considering playing parts of the upcoming season in a bubble and that some teams may be separated from others, but this is truly the first that we've heard anyone with any real authority speak about an all-Canadian division.
All of this has led to widespread speculation that the NHL will go with division "bubbles" for 2020-21 and that teams will play the entire season within their bubble. If a Canadian Division is indeed in the plans, what will the other divisions look like? Sure there will be an Eastern bubble and a Western bubble? Is it as simple as Canadian (North), East, West and Central?
Check out this concept from Reddit user PaperMoonShine:
I have to say... that's damn near perfect. I think I'd have a difficult time calling any division that has the Detroit Red Wings and the Chicago Blackhawks the "Souther Division", but maybe the South/Central Division? In any case, why argue over semantics? This is frankly about as good as it's going to get if the league is in fact going to go this route.
Personally I can't wait to see an all Canadian division. Every night will be Hockey Night in Canada! Also, a division with both the Vegas Golden Knights and the Colorado Avalanche? Sign me up. Maybe even a classic Norris Division rivalry will be rekindled between the Blackhawks and Red Wings? I have to say, the idea of this is pretty enticing as an old school hockey fan. Hell, why not go all the way and bring some old school divisional names back? Bring back the Adams Division, Norris Division, Patrick Division and Smythe Division names just for old time sake?