NHL tells players they can go home but must self-quarantine

Matt Kalman
March 16, 2020 - 11:29 am

Less than a week since the NHL suspended its season because of the coronavirus pandemic, and one day after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced its advising there should be no events consisting of 50 or more people for eight weeks, it seems the NHL is approaching the situation with a more realistic timeline.

The NHL put out an edict saying "effective immediately players can opt to return home (outside of the club's home city), including outside of North America, to the extent flights are available."

Players must stay in self-quarantine until after March 27, and after that date depending on world "developments" team facilities could re-open.

Considering how many far-flung places NHL players come from, reuniting teams in a hurry if the league starts up again could be difficult. And, of course, the longer the NHL is out the longer the players will need their mini training camps to be in order to be in game-play shape, so it would appear the odds of the 2019-20 season being completed have shrunk significantly.

Already over the weekend the Swedish Hockey League, the ECHL and the Southern Professional Hockey League suspended operations.

Meanwhile, here in Boston, while we await word of whether Delaware North will be compensating its part-time employees being impacted by the loss of games, Bruins captain Zdeno Chara checked in with fans.

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