NHL Issues Update Amid COVID-19 Suspension

Four days ago the NHL suspended its season due to health concerns surrounding the rapidly spreading COVID-19 virus. For the first time since their initial announcement, the NHL’s public relations Twitter account released an update.

Players have been granted permission to return home whether that be internationally or across the country under the strict guidelines they remain in self-quarantine. Not welcome news for the small majority who believed this would simply blow over.

Following the CDC’s recommended self-quarantine period which could be lifted on March 27th, in theory, would see a return to facilities where players begin skating and training. Assuming, of course, that all goes according to plan. In spite of that, one of the more interesting bullet points was the final one which states: In addition to providing regular updates there remains the “potential of opening a training camp period roughly 45 days into the 60-day period covered by the CDC’s directive.”

Avoiding bumps in the road from now until the 27th, the gap between day 45 and day 60 of the CDCs mandate would likely act as an abridged training camp. What cannot be emphasized enough is whether it can be determined if the country and the world alike are in a necessary place to allow for the NHL to move forward. Granting your players permission to leave the country if they’d like speaks volumes to how much of a gamble next Friday is.

However, it would appear as if the powers that be are putting together a solid plan where teams return to action. But at this rate, the earliest the league-leading Boston Bruins take the ice for real will be mid-May.

Joe Russo

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