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AHL SETS DATE FOR START OF THE 2020-21 SEASON

Unlike the NHL, when the AHL shutdown on March 12th due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was impossible for the league to start back up again. Without a TV contract, the prospect of holding games without fans in attendance was simply not an option due to the lost revenue. The league has now announced its plans for the 2020-21 season, with a potential start date.

According to TSN's Frank Seravalli, the AHL is targeting the date of December 4th as the start of the new season. This is likely a good indication of when the NHL is looking at starting its next season as well, as the two leagues are closely connected.

That said, this is obviously not written in stone. If fans aren't allowed to attend games by then, and you have to think there a very good chance that will be the case, the AHL will likely remain shuttered until it can get people back in attendance.

Back in May, when the AHL officially announced it would not be returning to finish 2019-20, Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun said the league depends on tickets sales for 75 to 85 percent of its revenue. While ticket sales are still important for NHL teams, its take at the gate wouldn't be anywhere near this portion of its overall revenue.



Not having the AHL in operation is also a huge negative for the NHL. It serves as the NHL's main developmental league for young players (the other, less important one being the ECHL), and not having those players on the ice could have a major impact. As it stands right now, both have about four months to come up with some sort of plan B, just in case.


TIM TUCKER
JULY 30, 2020  (18H41)
QUIZ ON TRADERUMOURS
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What is this breed of dog?
MALTESE
POODLE
SHIH TZU
YORKSHIER TERRIER
SURVEY
Which scenario would you prefer if the NHL season restart?
END OF REGULAR SEASON + PLAYOFFS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH 16 TEAMS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH MORE TEAMS
IT'S BETTER TO CANCEL THE SEASON