We don't know when the 2020-21 NHL season will begin — and during his press conference over the weekend, Gary Bettman was pretty frank about how all dates and protocols that are being bandied about at this point are pure speculation.
But Bettman did keep coming back to the idea of a start date in December or January, and the idea of wanting to play a full 82-game season. If that works out, that's not *so* far away. And we'll also have World Juniors over Christmastime as usual. It'll look similar to the playoffs — taking place in the bubble here in Edmonton, in a rink without fans.
It feels heartening to see that the ice is still in at Rogers Arena — and that Elias Pettersson is in town and using it!
Patrick Johnston of The Province reported a few days ago
that the Canucks have also been able to share their facility with local boys' and girls' minor hockey leagues who were searching for a place to skate.
Hopefully, the logistics and economics continue to work out for everybody, and we see the Canucks holding another training camp back in the facility before too long.
Less heartening — the news that the Canucks have just parted ways with their social media guru, Derek Jory, who has served as the fans' eyes and ears around the team for more than a decade.
Of course, Petey's 16-month reign as Calder Trophy winner came to an end on Monday, when Colorado's Cale Makar took the title, beating out Quinn Hughes.
While the difference in total points between the two wasn't massive, Makar did collect more than twice as many first-place votes as Hughes did.
Quinn and Cale were the two blueliners selected to the 2020 All-Rookie Team:
A few years ago, the Professional Hockey Writers' Association pledged to offer full transparency to its voting process. They now release not just the voting totals, but also each member's individual ballots.
The PWHA doesn't vote for all awards, but if you click here
, you can see who failed to turn in a ballot and which ballots were spoiled, as well as breaking down the charts for each individual award. If you don't have a magnifying glass, I'd recommend downloading the PDFs, so they can be expanded.
Beyond Hughes, you will find a smattering of Canucks scattered through the lists.
• Jacob Markstrom - 4th place by Eric Engels of Sportsnet
• J.T. Miller - 5th place by Francois Gagnon of RDS
• Elias Pettersson - three 5th-place votes, by James Mirtle and Scott Powers of The Athletic, and Matt Porter of the Boston Globe
• Quinn Hughes - three 5th-place votes by Josh Clipperton of the Canadian Press, Ben Kuzma of The Province and Dane Mizutani of the St. Paul Pioneer Press
• J.T. Miller - 2nd place by Joe Yerdon of The Athletic
Lady Byng Trophy - 16 total votes for Elias Pettersson, who I sincerely believe will have a good angle on this trophy in the years to come:
• 1st place - Adrian Dater - BSN Denver (Colorado Hockey Now), Joe Smith - The Athletic, Josh Yohe - The Athletic
• 2nd place - Jonatan Lindqvist - Viasat, Matt Porter - Boston Globe
• 3rd place - Justin Bourne - Sportsnet, Ryan Kennedy - The Hockey News, Abbey Mastracco - Bergen Record, Richard Morin - Arizona Republic , Jim Thomas - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
• 4th place - Jonathan Bernier - le Journal de Montreal, Scott Cruickshank - the Athletic, Marc Denis - RDS, Mike Loftus - Patriot Ledger, Rob Rossi - the Athletic
• 5th place - Jim Hughson, Hockey Night in Canada
Masterton Trophy - only top-three votes for this award - Jacob Markstrom received 27 total votes, including first-place votes from local writers Patrick Johnston of The Province, Gemma Karstens-Smith of Canadian Press, Daniel Wagner of Glacier Media, Rob Williams from the Daily Hive — and the Bobfather himself, Bob McKenzie of TSN.
Finally — I'll finish off today with two new tidbits on the free-agency front. According to Rick Dhaliwal, no new updates on potential deals for Chris Tanev or Jacob Markstrom.
One thing to remember — that five-day courting period before free agency has been abolished in the new collective bargaining agreement. So right up until free agency opens on October 9, no other team is permitted to have discussions with any of the Canucks' UFAs or their representatives.
When we hear things like "Other teams are interested," that's most likely the voice of an agent, trying to apply some pressure through the media. As much as I'd like to see the Canucks getting proactive, I think there is a necessary order of operations, which starts with determining just how much cap space they might be able to free up.
Still 17 days to go!