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ECHL announces start date for 2020-2021 season
ECHL

ECHL announces start date for 2020-2021 season

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Rush Tulsa ECHL 20200301

Rapid City Rush left-winger Brennan Saulnier (20) carries the puck through neutral ice just seconds ahead of scoring a "spin-o-rama" goal during the Rush’s ECHL hockey game against the Tulsa Oilers last season. the Rush will open the season on Dec. 11.

The ECHL, in conjunction with the Professional Hockey Players’ Association, announced Friday that the 2020-21 season will begin Dec. 11 under a split-season format.

Under the split-season guidelines, the following 13 teams will begin a 72-game season on Dec. 11— Allen, Florida, Greenville, Indy, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Orlando, Rapid City, South Carolina, Tulsa, Utah, Wheeling and Wichita.

Additionally, remaining ECHL teams will begin their Season on Jan. 15, 2021, competing in a 62-game season upon jurisdictional approval.

The Atlanta Gladiators have elected a voluntary suspension for the 2020-21 Season due to COVID-19 restrictions, returning to play in the 2021-22 season. All Atlanta Gladiators Players are immediately free agents for the 2020-21 season.

“The ECHL is excited to be able to confirm the beginning of the 2020-21 season by working with our local health officials and the PHPA to develop protocols for the safe return of our players, fans, and employees,” said ECHL Commissioner Ryan Crelin. “The ECHL is getting back to hockey, as we all work together to bring live entertainment back to our communities.”

“Our ECHL members have been looking forward to getting back on the ice since March 16, and providing the fans with exciting hockey in a safe environment,” PHPA Executive Director Larry Landon added. “I would like to thank Ryan Crelin, the ECHL Board of Governors and the commitment from our Return to Play Committee including Jake Flegel, Josh Holmstrom, Steven Kaunisto, Justin Taylor and Riley Weselowski.”

The ECHL regular season will conclude on June 6, 2021. A schedule for games from Dec. 11 — January 14 will be announced in the near future.

Under this split-season scenario, league standings will be based on winning percentage during the regular season. The post-season format will be based on the eligible competing teams in the regular season and will be announced at a later date.

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