If all goes well today and as expected, the NHL and NHLPA ratify and approve their tentative agreement on a CBA extension, and the ‘NHL Return to Play’ plan becomes official, the Boston Bruins could be living in luxury for at least the next month.
The Bruins, are one of the top four teams in the Eastern Conference and will automatically qualify for the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs. While eight other teams battle for their season, the Bruins will play three round-robin games against the Tampa Bay Lightning, Philadelphia Flyers, and Washington Capitals. Those games will determine the official seeding for the top four teams in the Eastern Conference. According to TSN Insider Bob McKenzie, those four teams and then the fifth-best points percentage team, the Pittsburgh Penguins will be staying at the five-star Hotel X on the exhibition grounds in Toronto.
“Twelve teams are going to be in Edmonton and 12 will in Toronto,” TSN’s Bob McKenzie began on ‘Insider Trading’. “You have to allocate hotels to create these bubbles that we’ve been talking so much about. In Toronto, there’s going to be five teams staying at Hotel X, which is on the Exhibition grounds. Those teams are the top five in the Eastern Conference, points percentage-wise.”
– Update on ratification process of Return to Play and CBA extension
– Biggest area of concern when it comes to starting and finishing RTP
– What the bubbles in EDM and TOR could look like
— TSN Hockey (@TSNHockey) July 9, 2020
The top teams being placed in the top hotel, in both Toronto and Edmonton, isn’t a coincidence. It’s by design to reward the teams who performed the best during the regular season. This is one small reward for the Bruins being the President’s Trophy winners despite them still potentially losing the top seed in the round-robin round.
“This is a merit-based system in terms of the hotels teams get,” McKenzie continued. “The other seven teams from the East will be at the Royal York hotel downtown, and both hotels will be fully locked down.”