The NHL announced its return-to-play plan this week, and that includes two hub cities hosting 24 teams in a rather interesting playoff format. While NHL commissioner Gary Bettman named 10 hub city finalists, things aren't set in stone.
There's still a chance that games are played outside of the hub cities, provided health and safety concerns change drastically in a positive direction, and we may even see teams return to their home cities at some point during the playoffs.
“Yes. It depends on what the world looks like,” said NHL commissioner Gary Bettman in an interview with NBC’s Mike Tirico, according to NBC Sports Boston's Joe Haggerty. "If you made me guess today I think we’ll be in one of the two hub cities, or conceivably a third city, but if things change dramatically and we have the ability to go back to the home markets [we would do it.] We anticipate playing this without fans, but if at some point things change and we could then obviously we would re-evaluate. Everything we’ve been doing for the last 10-12 weeks was having to do with preparing for anything that might be in front of us. "