Tonight's Canucks postseason game could get delayed

Aug 7 2020, 4:12 pm

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With an action-packed day of NHL hockey, there’s a good chance that Game 4 of the Vancouver Canucks and Minnesota Wild series will be delayed tonight.

The first game of the day in the Edmonton bubble went into overtime, with the Arizona Coyotes eliminating the Nashville Predators 5:27 into the extra frame.

Though it wasn’t a marathon overtime game, it was enough to push back the start time of the second game at Rogers Place. The Edmonton Oilers and Chicago Blackhawks will now play at 4:01 pm PT, 16 minutes later than scheduled, the NHL announced.

That may seem insignificant, but it could have an effect on the Canucks-Wild game, which is the last one of the day.

Already a late game with a 7:45 pm PT scheduled start, the domino effect could push puck drop until after 8 pm. If the Oilers-Blackhawks game goes into overtime, which is unlimited during the postseason, it’ll push the start time even later.

Not only does the ice need resurfacing between games, the NHL also needs to do a deep cleaning of surfaces used by the teams playing. The league also needs to reserve time for the pre-game warmup, which begins 30 minutes prior to game time.

In total, there needs to be at least 89 minutes between each game, according to TSN 1040’s Blake Price.

The NHL has tried to avoid this situation by scheduling round robin games between the top four teams in each conference for the middle game in each hub city, as regular season overtime rules are in effect for those games. That’s not the case today, as six Stanley Cup Qualifers are scheduled.

So if you want to get to bed at a decent time tonight, hope for a quick game between the Oilers and Blackhawks.

**Update: Thankfully, the Oilers-Blackhawks game didn’t go to overtime. The Canucks game will be delayed by just 15 minutes, with puck drop set for 8:01 pm PT.

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