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Trudeau says government is ‘open’ to NHL hub city in Canada

Liam McHugh, Patrick Sharp and Keith Jones discuss their criteria and wish list for cities to host the NHL's return to play.

OTTAWA -- Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the Canadian government is “open” to the NHL operating a playoff “hub city” in Canada as long as it is allowed by local health authorities.

Trudeau said Tuesday the decision will need to be made by the NHL and the provincial and municipal governments where the league wishes to operate.

If the NHL returns to play amid the coronavirus pandemic this ummer, it would start with the playoffs and with 24 teams, preferably split between two hub cities. The league has narrowed down its potential sites to 10 cities, including Toronto, Edmonton and Vancouver in Canada.

The NHL has said it will not choose a Canadian city if players are subject to the mandatory, 14-day quarantine currently in effect at the border. Trudeau also said Tuesday that Canada and the United States will continue to limit non-essential travel between the two countries until at least July 21.

The NHL is currently allowing its players to use team facilities to train in small groups. Training camps are cleared to begin July 10.