NHL Advises Teams Cancel Thursday Practices, Meetings Amid Coronavirus Concerns

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMarch 12, 2020

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 16: A detailed view of the NHL logo on the back of the goal netting before the game between the Washington Capitals and the Toronto Maple Leafs at Capital One Arena on October 16, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

The NHL advised teams against holding morning skates, practices and team meetings Thursday amid concerns regarding the coronavirus pandemic.

While the NHL has yet to suspend operations, it released a statement Wednesday and noted that a further decision would be announced at some point Thursday:

NHL Public Relations @PR_NHL

National Hockey League Statement Regarding Coronavirus: https://t.co/AKrmh8ao4F https://t.co/PZ7dQBbGVB

The NBA officially announced Wednesday night that its season had been suspended after a Utah Jazz player tested positive for the coronavirus:


NBA To Suspend Season Following Tonight's Games https://t.co/2PTx2fkLlW

Although the NBA did not name the player, Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium reported it was All-Star center Rudy Gobert.

The NHL played its full slate of five games Wednesday, and 10 games are still scheduled to be played Thursday.

Of those, the Columbus Blue Jackets' home tilt with the Pittsburgh Penguins is set to be played without fans in attendance. The Blue Jackets announced the news after Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine banned spectators from attending sporting events to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

According to CNN, the World Health Organization has reported there are over 124,500 documented cases of coronavirus worldwide and it has caused more than 4,600 deaths. There are also 1,200 known cases in the United States.

The 2019-20 NHL regular season is nearing its conclusion, as every team has played at least 68 of their 82 scheduled games, while some have played as many as 71.

The regular season is currently set to conclude on April 4, and the playoffs would start shortly thereafter.