Today, the NHL has announced that the Players decided to postpone two days worth of games that cover all eight teams still remaining in the 2020 playoffs.
After much discussion, NHL Players believe that the best course of action would be to take a step back and not play tonight’s and tomorrow’s games as scheduled. The NHL supports the Players’ decision and will reschedule those four games beginning Saturday and adjust the remainder of the Second Round schedule accordingly.
Black and Brown communities continue to face real, painful experiences. The NHL and NHLPA recognize that much work remains to be done before we can play an appropriate role in a discussion centered on diversity, inclusion and social justice.
We understand that the tragedies involving Jacob Blake, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others require us to recognize this moment. We pledge to work to use our sport to influence positive change in society.
The NHLPA and NHL are committed to working to foster more inclusive and welcoming environments within our arenas, offices and beyond.
See below for a timeline of how this historic day unfolded.
The insiders are reporting that the NHL and NHLPA are discussing postponing games today after they suffered the self-inflicted indignity of being the only professional team sport to ignore the NBA players’ calls to strike last night. The movement was led by the Milwaukee Bucks to protest the continued racist violence after the police shot Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Last night Bill Daly seemed to be leaving the door open to act if the players pulled the lever:
Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly says NHL postponing games in protest of Jacob Blake shooting is "not currently being contemplated. Obviously, we will see if the players feel differently and will respond appropriately and as necessary."— Stephen Whyno (@SWhyno) August 26, 2020
No players took that step last night, but also, the NHL didn’t explicitly invite the step either. They locked themselves into a game of chicken, and no one came out of it looking good.
As of this morning, this was the status:
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Exec Dir, Don Fehr spoke yesterday and it’s expected there will be a number of discussions between the NHL/NHLPA and players today. Unlikely the NHL changes it’s position unless driven by players.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) August 27, 2020
And then the Hockey Diversity Alliance spoke:
We the @TheOfficialHDA have formally requested the @NHL to suspend all playoff games today. We strongly feel this sends a clear message that human rights take priority over sports.— Evander Kane (@evanderkane_9) August 27, 2020
At the moment, it seems the NHL has heard and is about to act.
Players being told to prepare for cancellations tonight— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) August 27, 2020
All signs pointing to possible postponement tonight . Source says that’s the likely outcome. But still not fully decided. Lots of conversations among players today. https://t.co/dIHEQumxaI— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) August 27, 2020
Players in at least one #NHL dressing room have conducted a vote to not play their #StanleyCup game tonight.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) August 27, 2020
Is this move by the NHL...
This poll is closed
A day late and a dollar short
Better late than never
Updates as they come in:
More than 100 players in the bubble had a call with Evander Kane and Matt Dumba this afternoon.— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) August 27, 2020
No NHL games will be played tonight.— Emily Kaplan (@emilymkaplan) August 27, 2020
Sounds like the Hockey Diversity Alliance, w/ a strong push from Evander Kane & Matt Dumba, convinced players to take a step back. If you want to know more about the HDA, here's their website. Group was formed in June. https://t.co/LCA8GqpdcH
Players and teams involved are acknowledging there won’t be games tonight, however, it’s up to the NHL and NHLPA to formally postpone.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) August 27, 2020
More on players taking initiative:
Spoke to @Dreamer_Aliu78 who tells me it was the players who initiated the discussion w/ @TheOfficialHDA last night. Scott Laughton, James van Riemsdyk & Kevin Shattenkirk all reached out to Chris Stewart, looking for advice on what to do. It led to today's large #NHL group call— Farhan Lalji (@FarhanLaljiTSN) August 27, 2020
Told that the Canucks were the driving force behind ultimate position taken by players not to play...— Larry Brooks (@NYP_Brooksie) August 27, 2020
Exactly. The PLAYERS took a stand today, they stepped up. Proud of my fellow nhl PLAYERS for their action. https://t.co/IKcsvcoUbl— Evander Kane (@evanderkane_9) August 27, 2020