The Ontario Hockey League has announced some important dates for the 2020-21 season that gives players and organizations some clarity on the upcoming campaign.
For the time being, the OHL is sticking with their previously announced start date of Tuesday, December 1st. We don’t yet know the schedule for the season, but we do know that teams will be playing 64 games, four games less than a normal schedule.
There are still things to do before the season starts, however. Training camps are slated to open on Sunday, November 15. Exhibition games will be played on the weekends of November 20-22nd and the 27-29th. Once again, the exact schedule for these exhibition games is not yet known.
The OHL trade deadline will be on February 10th, 2021 and could be a very important day for the Ottawa 67’s. The 67’s are in an awkward position where this season could go either way. They could be buyers and take a third crack at a Memorial Cup in three seasons or they could shut it down and be sellers at the deadline. The plan is very dependent on how the season goes leading up to the deadline, but only time will tell.
The season is currently expected to wrap up on April 29th, 2021 meaning the 67’s might be playing more weekday games then normal. There are a lot of games but, not a whole lot of time. Playoffs will begin on April 2nd, 2021 and will wrap up on June 14th, 2021. The Memorial Cup is scheduled to take place in either Sault Ste. Marie or Oshawa between June 17-27th.
The final date that was released was the OHL Priority Draft. The draft is scheduled to take place on May 8th, 2021 with the U-18 draft being on May 12th.
With the current global situation, none of this is set in stone and there could be changes should there be a need to do so. There was no mention of either fans in the stands for the season or what the plan is for the the three American teams but, it’s too early to know the full scope of the situation on those topics. OHL Insiders on Twitter is reporting that the OHL is looking at the option of Saginaw, Flint, and Erie playing one another and not crossing the border until it is deemed safe to do so.
I won’t get into if I think that’s a good idea or not, but this isn’t the most ideal situation. There are better ways to do this. Regardless, the OHL is in a tough spot. There are many unknowns about this upcoming season, but we do know one thing for sure, I will be right there along side you covering the Ottawa 67’s every step of the way! If you want more 67’s content, give me a follow on Twitter @HPR_Frankie13