In light of the NBA and various other leagues opting to postpone games Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, the NHL has followed suit by postponing Thursday's Game 3 matchups (Flyers vs. Islanders and Golden Knights vs. Canucks) and Friday's Game 4 matchups (Lightning vs. Bruins and Avalanche vs. Stars).
The NHL and NHLPA has released the following joint statement.
After the NHL decided to move forward with a pair of Game 3 contests Wednesday despite the postponement of games in several other leagues including the NBA and MLB, Evander Kane, Matt Dumba, Anthony Duclair and Wayne Simmonds of the Hockey Diversity Alliance all called for the league to suspend future contests.
As reported by Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic, Kane and Dumba spoke to over 100 players currently in the bubble in Toronto and Edmonton via a call Thursday afternoon. Additionally, per Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet, players were told as early as 1 pm CDT on Thursday to prepare for cancellations.
Rumblings of this decision began when several teams, including Dallas, Vancouver and Vegas pushed back their media availabilities Thursday morning.
The NHL will return to play Saturday.