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84 regular-season games: discussions are taking place
Credit: Getty Images

The NHL’s busy schedule isn’t necessarily optimal.

After all, in 2024, Brandon Montour and Brad Lambert were celebrating their Stanley Cup conquest with their Panthers teammates on Sunday, and the next day, they were signing a contract with another team. These are just a few of the many examples over the years.

In 2024, the Cup was won on June 24. Three days later (27) was the trophy gala. The next two days (28-29) were the repechage. On the 30th: the Stanley Cup Parade, and the next day (today), the free agent market opened. Not that I don’t like it, but maybe we should think about spreading things out a bit?

And tomorrow (July 2), the regular schedule for the 2024-2025 season will be officially unveiled.

We already know that the Canadiens will face the Leafs on October 9.

Speaking of schedules, the NHL and the Players’ Association have had preliminary discussions about an idea for a schedule when the new collective bargaining agreement is adopted.


Indeed, the people want fewer games and the NHL has decided… to add two. An 84-game schedule could be in the cards.

But as Pierre LeBrun pointed out, it’s far from set in stone.

84 games is a bit much. Already 82 games is a limit, I would have hoped for a reduction of two games, at least. And I’m not alone in thinking that.

Shortening the season to 80 games would have benefited everyone, except perhaps the profit-seeking owners and Alex Ovechkin, who would have two fewer games per season to break Wayne Gretzky’s scoring record.

In addition to increasing the schedule, both sides have talked about reducing the number of preparatory games to four, starting the season earlier in October and crowning a Stanley Cup champion in early June rather than late June.

In short, the whole thing could potentially move the NHL calendar by about two weeks, giving people a chance to breathe a little and enjoy the construction vacations.

To be continued. In any case, the collective agreement doesn’t expire for another two years.


– The team’s best attacking prospect.

– File to follow.

– That’s a good one.

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