Arena says storm damage unlikely to hurt NHL restart plans


New York (AFP)

Edmonton's Rogers Place, one of two planned hub arenas for the National Hockey League season restart, has suffered storm damage but it shouldn't hinder the league's return.

The NHL selected Edmonton and Toronto as hosts for games starting August 1 as 24 teams play for the Stanley Cup after the season was shut down March 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A dozen Western Conference teams are set to travel to Edmonton on July 26 and stay at hotels attached to the arena or near the 18,500-seat venue that opened in September 2016.

"A significant storm came through (Edmonton on Thursday night). As a result, #RogersPlace has suffered some water damage to the terminus of Ford Hall, along with some smaller leaks in other parts of the building," a twitter statement from the arena said.

"We are assessing the damage & at this time are confident that it will not hamper our planning & preparation & we will be ready to host the return of @NHL hockey as hub city."

Toronto will host 12 Eastern Conference teams for playoff contests, two of which are set to go to Edmonton once the NHL playoffs are down to the last four clubs.

The Stanley Cup is set to be awarded in late September or early October in Edmonton.