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NHL cancels Thursday morning skates, practices as decision looms

Engel-Natzke capitals

PHILADELPHIA, PA - NOVEMBER 17: A view of the practice pucks of the Philadelphia Flyers during warm-ups against the Tampa Bay Lightning on November 17, 2018 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)

(Update: The NHL decided to “pause” the 2019-20 season. Read more.)

Citing “uncertainty regarding next steps regarding the coronavirus,” the NHL announced that teams were advised to cancel morning skates, practices, and meetings on Thursday.

This comes after the NHL stated that it was considering its options after the NBA put its season on hold due to the coronavirus.

The uncertainty regarding whether the season will be put on hold or not could be cleared up as soon as Thursday afternoon. TSN’s Darren Dreger reports that there could be a conference call covering the issue at 1 p.m. ET.

Several signs point to the season being placed on hold, but it’s not a guarantee yet.

The CHL and AHL rank among other leagues that are still mulling over their options. Meanwhile, other sports leagues are making decisions, including the MLS’ interestingly specific 30-day pause.

Stay tuned as this situation develops. Check out the Push for the Playoffs in the event that Thursday’s games go on as planned.

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