Report: NHL Considering Las Vegas as 'Centralized' Site to Resume Season

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistApril 24, 2020

FILE - In this Oct. 29, 2018, file photo, National Hockey League commissioner Gary Bettman speaks during a news conference in New York. The NHL and lawyers for retired players say a tentative settlement has been reached in a concussion lawsuit brought against the league. The league and players’ lawyers on Monday, Nov. 12, 2018, announced a tentative non-class settlement had been reached in the consolidated case after months of court-ordered mediation. The lawsuit involved more than1 00 former players who accused the NHL of failing to better prevent head trauma or warn players of such risks while promoting violent play that led to their injuries. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
Seth Wenig/Associated Press

Las Vegas is reportedly one of 12 cities being vetted as a "centralized site" to complete the 2019-20 NHL season, according to Jesse Granger of The Athletic.

Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic first reported the league's plan to use four sites to host the remainder of the season, which was suspended in March out of concern for the coronavirus. Minnesota, Edmonton, Toronto, Pittsburgh, Columbus and Dallas were also reportedly being considered.

Each NHL team has 11-14 games remaining in the regular season before the start of the playoffs.

Commissioner Gary Bettman discussed the league's latest plans with Ron MacLean of Sportsnet (h/t Jordan Hall of NBC Sports)

"It'll be four cities if that's the route we go—and by the way, all of this is contingent, nothing has been decided. This is just part of the modeling I talked about where we're making sure we're prepared for any eventuality. Maybe it'll be two cities. It's not something that we can predict right at this moment, but this is a part of the contingencies."

The league had originally asked teams about their arena availability through August.

The four-city plan would reduce travel while keeping players as safe as possible from COVID-19.

As Granger reported, Las Vegas would be especially valuable in this scenario because of the abundance of hotels available, allowing teams to spread out in order to limit contact.

T-Mobile Arena, home of the Vegas Golden Knights, also has multiple locker rooms. It was able to host 12 basketball teams for the Pac-12 tournament.

Nevada also has limited exposure to the coronavirus so far, ranking 29th among U.S. states in confirmed cases through Friday, per CNN.com