Sources: NHL trade deadline moved back one day

Scratch out that March 3 trade deadline date that was officially released over the summer in the NHL's critical dates. It's been changed.

Sources tell ESPN.com the trade deadline will now be a day later on March 4. It should be announced sometime in the next week.

The trade deadline, as per the CBA, must be 40 days from the end of the regular season. But that fell on March 3 and 12 games are to be played that night. The league promised GMs light fare for trade deadline day, which is the reason for the switch.

The league went to the NHL Players' Association and asked whether it would be willing to move it. As it turns out, neither side wants a lot of games on trade deadline day. The league offered March 2 (one game) or March 4 (two games) as options.

Sources said the league would have preferred March 2 but the union chose March 4.

Pierre LeBrun covers the NHL for ESPN.com.