By Harvey Hoffman

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman wants to start the 2020-21 NHL season on January 1st, 2021, but a CBA disagreement could push that back.

Odds are heavily in favor of the new NHL season starting after Jan. 1, 2021. Is it realistic we see the season start on time?

Outcome Odds
On or Before January 1st 2021 +180
After January 1st 2021 -240

Odds from Nov. 25th 

The main reason the NHL is in jeopardy of missing their original Jan. 1 targeted start date is due to a disagreement pertaining to the CBA. The players agreed to a certain deferral percent, and escrow amount in the CBA ratified last July, but the NHL’s latest proposals are asking for additional salary deferrals and an increase in the escrow cap.


While a potential Jan. 1 start date would indicate a season in the 60-game range, it’s starting to look like a 48-game campaign is the more realistic option. The last two NHL shortened seasons in 1994-95 and 2012-13 both began in the third week of January and featured 48-game seasons.