VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — The Vancouver Canucks are the first Canadian team in the NHL forced to pull out of training due to a potential COVID-19 exposure — but only for one day.
In an emailed statement, the team announced it’s cancelling all training and workouts that were scheduled Sunday out of an “abundance of caution.”
#CanucksCamp practices and workouts for today are cancelled. The decision was made out of an abundance of caution due to potential exposure of COVID-19.
Details regarding tomorrow’s schedule will be announced later today.
— Vancouver #Canucks (@Canucks) January 10, 2021
Later in the day, the team announced practice will resume Monday.
While there’s no word yet on if anyone on the team has tested positive for the virus, Randip Janda from NEWS 1130’s sister station, Sportsnet 650, explains if a player on the team tests positive, there is a chance staff members will test positive.
“As far as scheduling and as far as getting the season started, it really puts a lot of things into question. How long would the delay be if it was indeed a player? … You have to kind of expect the unexpected when it comes to COVID,” Janda says.
The news of a potential exposure is just the start of what the season will looking like according to Janda.
“If you’re going to have teams travelling back and forth. There are going to be moments in the season where we see incidents like this where a team does say maybe … you have to push things back by a day or two,” he says.
“So, in terms of pushing back the season, and the start of the season or even delaying … anything is on the table right now.”
The Canucks are the fourth NHL team that have had to cancel a practice due to the coronavirus over the last three days. Columbus, Pittsburgh and Dallas also had similar incidents that had members on the teams test positive for the virus.
“The Canucks potential exposure here shows us that, U.S. and Canada we’re having these issues as well. These games are going to have to work through the small details and make sure that every player, every staff member, every individual that works for a team — even media for that matter — if there are in the rink, are going to have to go through that extra precaution to ensure everybody’s safe.”
Janda says hockey fans need to face a new normal if a league continues to travel and take teams to the road.
“The NHL has chosen to execute their season this way and it is going to come with a lot of ups and downs. I think we’re starting to see that now,” he adds.
The new season begins on Wednesday
— Randip Janda (@RandipJanda) January 10, 2021
The Canucks were slated to start the season on Wednesday, going up against the Oilers in Edmonton.
– With files from Jonathan Szekeres