Details for dates and times of the New York Islanders qualifying round are beginning to emerge.
The New York Islanders will begin their run for the 2020 Stanley Cup on August 1 against the Florida Panthers in a best-of-five qualifying round series in Toronto.
Read that sentence to someone from 2019 and watch their head spin as they try to make sense of (1) hockey in August, (2) a best-of-five series, (3) a qualifying round, (4) playing in Toronto.
But here we are on the verge of summer hockey that will eventually, if all goes well, lead into fall hockey. It’s a wild time.
On August 1, the Isles will take to the ice for their first competitive game since the 2019-20 season was suspended back on March 12. With the NHL’s RTP plan agreed upon by the players and the league’s board of governors, finer details can now be ironed out, like dates and times for games.
Here’s what we know so far about what days the Isles will play their qualifying round games against the Panthers as well as when and where those games might be aired.
When and Where
Along with the NHL’s RTP plan was a new Critical Dates Calendar that lays out when each step of Phase 3 (training camp) and Phase 4 (return to competitive play) will start.
You can find all the details about that Critical Dates Calendar here.
We know that the qualifying round will begin on August 1. The Isles-Panthers series will be one of five games taking place on that first day.
The Isles schedule for the qualifying round goes:
- Game 1: August 1
- Game 2: August 4
- Game 3: August 5
- Game 4: August 7 (if needed)
- Game 5: August 9 (if needed)
According to the Fourth Period’s David Pagnotta, here’s who will carry these games, including the exhibition games. NBC will carry the global feed for games in Toronto. He also states that games are scheduled to take place at noon, 4 PM, and 8 PM Eastern Time from Toronto.
It’s not yet clear what time slot Islanders-Panthers games will fall into. Although some sleuthing on the NHL app has shed some light. It seems the Isles could be playing Game 1 at 4 PM on August 1.
When I tried to re-create this on my NHL app I was unable to see times for games. So that may have been a mistake by the NHL or something they weren’t yet ready to release publicly yet.
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What is clear, is that we’re going to have non-stop hockey from August 1 t through August 9 and likely longer depending on how the first-round looks like.