First sports equinox arrives: NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL all play in October after thrilling WNBA Finals

·1 min read

The holiday season is fast approaching, but for sports fans, it's already the most wonderful time of the year.

October means the sports calendar is in full swing. The WNBA recently wrapped a thrilling final on Sunday. Major League Baseball is completing its pennant races ahead of the World Series starting next week. The NHL returned last week and the NBA returned to its normal calendar with teams opening this week. The college football season is halfway through and the NFL rolls on with Week 7.

With these sports all aligning on Thursday, the phenomenon known as "sports equinox" has arrived.

Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Chris Taylor (3) steals second base in front of Atlanta Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson (7) in the eighth inning of Game 3 of the NLCS.
Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Chris Taylor (3) steals second base in front of Atlanta Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson (7) in the eighth inning of Game 3 of the NLCS.

What is the sports equinox?

The sports equinox is when there are games in the NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL on a given day.

The jumbled schedules due to the coronavirus pandemic led to more days than usual in 2020, with an increased number of baseball and basketball/hockey days overlapping.

This year's equinox marks the return of a "normal sports calendar."

When is sports equinox?

The sports equinox occurs in October. This year, the date is Oct. 21.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Cleveland Browns (Thursday Night Football, Week 7)

MLB: Atlanta Braves at Los Angeles Dodgers (NLCS Game 5)

NBA: Three games

NHL: 10 games

Idea of sports equinox excludes women's sports

The "sports equinox" does not account for any major professional women's sports leagues. The NWSL doesn't play Thursday, for example.

Other sports happening Thursday include 2021 Zozo Championship (PGA), and four college football games.

Follow Chris Bumbaca on Twitter @BOOMbaca.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: What is sports equinox? NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL all play in October