The Maple Leafs can now host in-market regular-season games. Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Six Canadian NHL teams now allowed to play in-market home games

And then there was one. 

ESPN's Emily Kaplan reported on Thursday that the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators have joined the Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames, Montreal Canadiens, and Vancouver Canucks among Canadian teams cleared to host in-market regular-season games when the campaign gets underway next Wednesday. 

While the Winnipeg Jets are still awaiting approval to host opponents at Bell MTS Place, Manitoba acting deputy chief provincial public health officer Dr. Jazz Atwal told the Canadian Press (h/t CBC) he's confident the Jets won't run into a last-second hurdle. 

Because the border that separates the United States and Canada is likely to remain closed to nonessential travel for the foreseeable future due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the NHL re-aligned clubs into four temporary divisions meant only for the upcoming season. The North Division contains all seven Canadian teams, and each franchise will play only division games from the campaign's start through the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. 

It's hoped the NHL can resume business, as normal, by next fall. 

Earlier this week, the league announced that it sold the naming rights for its new divisions to account for financial losses accumulated amid the health crisis. 

Starting on Jan. 13, teams will compete in the Scotia NHL North Division, Honda NHL West Division, Discover NHL Central Division and MassMutual NHL East Division. 

Zac Wassink is a football and futbol aficionado who is a PFWA member and is probably yelling about Tottenham Hotspur at the moment. Erik Lamela and Eli Manning apologist. Chanted for Matt Harvey to start the ninth inning of Game 5 of the 2015 World Series at Citi Field. Whoops. You can find him on Twitter at @ZacWassink

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