Things were finally made official regarding a new CBA and Return To Play on Friday night after the appropriate votes were taken and the NHL is now all set to proceed with the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs. The players voted 502-135 in favor of (78.8%) and any players that don't want to play can opt out (as some have).
Whether the NHL and NHLPA are able to pull off the Stanley Cup Playoffs or not, both parties should be commended for getting to this point. If fans ultimately don't get a post-season, they can't the blame players and owners who seemingly knocked off the bullshit and got to the point.
The two long-time adversaries came together very quickly to do the hard, tedious work necessary to hammer out every last detail about pulling this shit off during these
preventable fucked-up circumstances. They not only figured out the complicated Return To Play logistics, they also ensured fucking labor peace through 2026 and that is huge for the NHL. This is the shit they've been going to the mattresses for over the last 25 years but were somehow able to figure this out quickly during a stressful period. It's almost like they got their priorities in order and focused on the matter at hand instead of being a bunch of asshole losers like MLB owners and their idiot commissioner.
Oh and you wanted the Olympics back? Here ya go, two more best-of-the-best tourneys. Make sure to stock up on some Death Wish for those start times. (This assumes the IOC doesn't pull some henhouse shit which certainly isn't out of the realm of possibility.)
News like this might keep your expectations in check, especially when nobody really knows what the threshold is for calling it a day.
But this does seem like it's mostly out of precaution and being careful.
NHL fans really couldn't have asked for much more so anybody crying about anything right now needs to shut the fuck up. (Yes, even you bitchy Red Wings fans. Go cry in your Stanley Cups. It's called a lottery for a reason.) Not everybody was going to be 100% satisfied, like they ever are. But the league and its players have done everything possible to make a playoffs happen in the midst of a goddamn pandemic. If a Stanley Cup isn't awarded in 2020, it won't be their fault*.
Now hit me with the offical "we're back" anthem...
*---unless it's later proven one or more players/staffers acted selfishly/foolishly, leading to a game of Corona Whack-A-Mole that results in a canceled post-season.