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Edmonton arena flooded; not expected to affect NHL hub plans

2020-21 nhl season

EDMONTON, AB - OCTOBER 02: Rogers Place before the Edmonton Oilers home opener against the Vancouver Canucks on October 2, 2019, in Edmonton, Canada. (Photo by Codie McLachlan/Getty Images)

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EDMONTON, Alberta — Parts of Rogers Place were flooded early Thursday night, with the Edmonton Oilers saying the damage wouldn’t affect plans to use the arena as an NHL hub when the season resumes.

Oilers Entertainment Group spokesman Tim Shipton said the storm that also brought hail caused leaks in one of the entrance hallways and smaller leaks elsewhere.

“We are assessing the damage and at this time are confident that it will not hamper our planning and preparation and we will be ready to host the return of NHL hockey as hub city,” Shipton said.

Video posted to Twitter showed water streaming from large gaps in the ceiling tiles of Ford Hall and the floor completely awash after a major thunderstorm that brought hail as well as heavy rain.

The arena opened in 2016.

The league plans to resume play with a 24-team format. The NHL is aiming to have teams in the hub cities of Toronto and Edmonton by July 26, with the games starting to count on Aug. 1.