UNDATED (AP) _ The NHL is taking a major step toward formulating the remainderof their season.
A person with knowledge of the situation tells The Associated Press the NHL Players’ Association’s executive board is voting on a 24-team playoff proposal as they return to play format. Results of the vote could be in as soon as Friday night.
Under the proposal plan, the top four teams in each of the Eastern and Western Conferences would play each other for seeding while the remaining 16 teams face off in a best-of-five series play-in round to set the final 16. That would mean byes for Boston, Tampa Bay, Washington and Philadelphia in the East and defending champion St. Louis, Colorado, Vegas and Dallas in West.
Even if the executive board votes to approve the format, the league and players union still need to negotiate other details, including health and safety protocols. But the format is a substantial piece of the return to play puzzle to award the Stanley Cup this season.