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PHT Morning Skate: Trebek almost Hockey Night in Canada host; 2020-21 NHL season info soon?

nhl puck tracking

DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 08: A picture in the penalty box of this years official game pucks NHL logo turns purple once frozen before the start of an NHL game between the Detroit Red Wings and the Boston Bruins at Little Caesars Arena on November 8, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit defeated Boston 4-2. (Photo by Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images)

NHLI via Getty Images

Welcome to the PHT Morning Skate, a collection of links from the NHL and around the hockey world. Have a link you want to submit for the PHT Morning Skate? Email us at

More information coming soon regarding 2020-21 NHL season?

• As early as Thursday, the next NHL Board of Governors meeting could provide some insight on how the 2020-21 season might look. Then again, there are so many possibilities flying around that it might instead be closer to a menu of educated guesses. Either way, this provides a nice breakdown of some of those possibilities. [The Ottawa Sun]

• In the article above, there’s discussion of different dates flying around for the start of the 2020-21 NHL season. There’s mention of how some talk revolves around January (late or early), and even February. February isn’t ideal, though, for a number of reasons. Elliotte Friedman recently discussed as much; in particular, will there be an appetite to wait with the NBA ambitiously aiming for Dec. 22 as their start date? It all hammers home the point that the 2020-21 NHL season start date is ultimately a moving target. [Sportsnet]

Other hockey links

• How Alex Trebek almost became the host of “Hockey Night in Canada.” [The Hockey News/SI]

• Look, it’s true that a lot of the bigger moves in 2020 NHL Free Agency either already happened, or may not happen for a while. But, in case you needed a reminder, the Lightning, Islanders, and other teams still have some work to do before the 2020-21 NHL season begins. [Rotoworld]

• Not totally sure how handing Matt Murray a four-year deal with a $6.25 million cap hit is exactly “low-risk.” OK, he’s 26, so there’s that. Still, the Senators actually took a pretty bold swing by investing so heavily in Murray: a) after he’s struggled mightily (both to stay on the ice, and to stop pucks) in recent seasons and b) when the goalie market was as robust as it’s been in ages. Sure, this could end up working out for the Senators, as Travis Yost details in part in this story. But I’m not exactly sure a budget-conscious team like the Senators spending this kind of money and term on Murray is anything but a rather significant gamble. [TSN]

• Remarkable story on how Flyers prospect Carsen Twarynski gains motivation from 14-year-old fan Mason Hicks, who survived an accidental house fire when Hicks was two years old. [NBC Sports Philadelphia]

• Fun stuff on Ryan Donato’s NHL upbringing thanks to his dad, Ted. The shot with young Ryan and a then-younger Joe Thornton is glorious. Remember when people called Thornton “Big Bird?” (Or did I hallucinate that one about “Jumbo Joe?”) [NBC Sports Bay Area]

• On paper, the Predators gambled by selecting a goalie so high in the first round of the 2020 NHL Draft. Picking Yaroslav Askarov 11th overall is looking more and more promising considering recent results, though. [A to Z Nashville]

• The Rangers’ path is clear: they’re going with the “kids,” from Alexis Lafreniere to Kaapo Kakko. [Blueshirt Banter]

• When it comes to the 2021 NHL Draft, the Seattle Kraken must “read and react.” [NHL to Seattle]

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.