The NHL has shifted its focus to more detailed conversations with the bids of Edmonton and Toronto after hitting a setback with Vancouver as a hub city, TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun reports.
According to LeBrun, Vancouver's bid hit a setback in talks with provisional health authorities, but the city has not been totally ruled out yet. He adds that Chicago and Los Angeles remain on standby to join Las Vegas as a hub city, if the NHL cannot make one work in Canada.
TSN's Ryan Rishaug adds that Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health has has signed off fully on a Hub city health and safety plan presented to them by Oilers Entertainment Group. He notes the plan includes protocols in the event of any positive tests during the event, as well as all details on the bubble concept and how to ensure its security.
Earlier this week, the league narrowed its list to six potential cities; Chicago, Edmonton, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Toronto and Vancouver. Vegas has been considered a front-runner to be one of the two hub cities throughout the process.
Columbus, Dallas, Minneapolis/St. Paul and Pittsburgh had previously been eliminated from the league's initial list of 10.
NHL training camps, otherwise known as Phase 3, are expected to start on July 10 with Phase 4 (games) starting in late July or early August.