AHL forms Return to Play task force, NHL on testing, and more
On May 11th, the AHL Board of Governors announced the cancellation of the season. The league suspended play in March around the same time as all other major sports leagues. Unfortunately the league could not continue without ticket revenue but have now put together a task force to devise a plan to return. It’s the first step of a long process that will be fraught with many challenges. The biggest being when to start and just how to deal with the attendance issues.
NHL and COVID-19 Testing
Gary Bettman was on ESPN today and spoke with Mike Greenberg on Return to Play and more importantly COVID-19 testing.
“If there’s one positive test — again, this will be under the strict guidance of the medical people — that person will be isolated,” Bettman said. “And we’ll be monitoring anybody, through contract tracing, that was in close proximity. Obviously, for any sport, if you have a major outbreak, it’s going to change everything; but we’re being told that an isolated case or a couple of isolated cases shouldn’t interfere with the plans, and we should be able to move forward.”Bettman on ESPN
This will be one of the biggest challenges for any of the 4 major sports. The key will be limiting exposure and isolating everyone involved. That’s why the plan for hub cities is key. As I noted today at Sportsnaut, Vegas will be the Eastern hub with the hopes that Toronto will be used for the Western Conference.