Why there are no NHL games on the schedule tonight

Halford and Brough discussion on the marvelous play of Quinn Hughes, who is currently the NHL scoring leader, plays a ton of minutes on the backend, and why you can make a very decent Hart Trophy argument for him.

NHL fans woke up Tuesday morning to a surprising sight: No games on the schedule.

While unexpected, there are a few reasons why the schedule is the way it is — and most of them revolve around U.S. Thanksgiving.

As Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek reports, the NHL only had three buildings available for games on Tuesday: Arizona, Vancouver and Calgary. But, because of the holiday week in the U.S., more American teams have requested home dates — taking the Canucks and Flames out of the equation. Calgary opened a four-game U.S. road trip on Monday in Seattle, and Vancouver begins a three-game U.S. road trip Wednesday in Colorado.

That leaves just the Arizona Coyotes, who host the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday and did not want to play back-to-back home games.

The NHL has 12 games on Wednesday, none on Thursday (for Thanksgiving), 15 on Friday and nine on Saturday. So the risk of having teams play four games in five nights was too great.

And one final wrinkle. Four teams — the Wild, Red Wings, Maple Leafs and Senators — are unavailable for games as they return home from Sweden after the Global Series.

Add all of those factors up and there’s a rare dark night on the NHL calendar, giving hockey fans a free night to get some chores done.

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