At long last, a deal was tentatively reached Friday between the NHL and NHLPA on the 2021 season, Elliotte Friedman was the first to report. The agreement is still subject to approval from the NHLPA executive board which was scheduled to meet at 8 p.m. on Friday, and the NHL Board of Governors is scheduled to vote sometime over the weekend.
According to Frank Seravalli, under the agreement, the season would start on January 13 with training camps to start on January 3. The teams who were not in the postseason will be able to start in late December. Players will have the option to opt-out of the season if he or an immediate family member is considered high-risk. In those cases, the team would have the option of "tolling" the contract which, based on my understanding, means adding an extra year to the contract.
The 23-man maximum roster limit and the $81.5 million salary cap will remain, but with a four to six-man taxi squad with each player being paid their full AHL salary.
Even if the agreement should pass, there is still more work to be done. The issue over where the seven Canadian teams will play has not yet been resolved, according to Pierre LeBrun. The league is hopeful this can be settled on Monday, but the possibility that these teams will need to play in a hub or moved to the United States remains.
All dates are subject to change and they may well change depending on what the ultimate decision on the Canadian teams is. However, this is the biggest step forward yet towards the beginning of the hockey season.