As the NHL continues to adjust schedules in response to preseason COVID-19 outbreaks, the league announced that the start time of the Capitals' Jan. 24 contest with the Sabres has been changed from 7 p.m. ET to 3 p.m. ET.
The NHL didn't announce a reason for the change, but Buffalo sports fans might be a bit preoccupied next Sunday night. The NFL's Bills could host the AFC championship game if the Cleveland Browns beat the Kansas City Chiefs in an AFC Divisional Round game on Sunday afternoon. But either way, the NFL has set kick off for 6:40 p.m. and the game would be in direct conflict with Caps-Sabres.
This is the third Caps game time or date changed this season. On Friday, the league announced changes to Washington's Feb. 21 game against the New York Rangers, which will now take place at 5 p.m. ET instead of 7 p.m. ET, in addition to their April 10 meeting which was previously scheduled to take place on April 11.
The NHL announced on Tuesday that 27 players across nine teams tested positive for the coronavirus during preseason training camp and that 17 of those 27 players played for the Dallas Stars. That forced a delay to Dallas' season. Washington doesn't play the Stars this season as the schedule is restricted to division play only.
The Capitals opened the 2021 season with back-to-back victories over the Sabres and a shootout loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday. Washington remains in Pittsburgh for Tuesday night's rematch on NBC Sports Washington at 7 p.m.