With NHL revenues taking a hit during the COVID-19 pandemic due to lack of fan attendance, the league has brought on four sponsors for the names of the new four divisions in its re-aligned schedule.
According to a press release, the new NHL division names are:
• Scotia NHL North Division (Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver, Winnipeg)
• Honda NHL West Division (Anaheim, Arizona, Colorado, Los Angeles, Minnesota, San Jose, St. Louis, Vegas)
• Discover NHL Central Division (Carolina, Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Florida, Nashville, Tampa Bay)
• MassMutual NHL East Division (Boston, Buffalo, New Jersey, NY Islanders, NY Rangers, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Washington)
Tuesday’s announcement follows an agreement between the NHL and NHLPA that allows teams to sell ad space on player helmets for the first time.
Due to the ongoing pandemic and to avoid cross-border travel, the NHL has split its 31 teams into four divisions with the 56-game schedule being contested strictly between teams within divisions. The three U.S.-based divisions will see their eight teams play each other eight times each, while the all-Canadian division will see some teams play each other nine times and others play each other 10 times.
The puck drops on the new NHL season on Jan. 13.