The NHL lockout has, pending an official agreement, finally reached its end (see story).

But when will the season actually start?

Multiple reports surfaced Sunday night that the NHL sent a memo to all 30 teams indicating that Jan. 19 is the most likely date for the start of the season.

But ESPN's Pierre LeBrun reports the puck could drop even sooner.

"NHL sent out memo to teams tonight saying Jan 19 puck drop is most probable, however if ratification process goes fast, Jan 15 still in play," he tweeted.

During the lockout-shortened 1994-95 season, the NHL played a 48-game schedule that started on Jan. 20 and ended with the New Jersey Devils winning the Stanley Cup on June 24.