NHL and NBA’s approach to Covid-19

Kaitlyn Smitten, Staff Writter

The Corona Virus has taken a great toll on everyday life but one of the most prominent changes is  sports, especially major league sports. The NHL and NBA have similar approaches to how they are structuring their season based around the coronavirus pandemic. Both leagues have had minimal exposure and ensured safe social distancing and mask wearing. 

The NHL has required teams to stay in a designated city to make sure there is no outside exposure to players. Teams are also actively participating in COVID-19 tests and temperature checks. They have also prohibited spectators from watching games inside the buildings and workers and managers must wear masks. 

As a result there has been some uproar on the no spectator rule but overall most fans seem to understand that in order to keep themselves and the players safe they must abide by the rules and regulations put in place by the CDC and the sports leagues themselves.

The NBA is taking a similar approach in not allowing spectators,testing their players and staff, and listening to the CDC on the rules and regulations they must follow to keep their season, and their players, alive. 

The NHL was the first sports league to announce their precautions consisting of a “bubble” so that teams didn’t travel as frequently and stayed in the same host town, proper social distancing and mask wearing along with no spectators or family allowed. 

Some may have heard of the NBA and NHL bubble. This is one of the many precautions both leagues are taking to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their players. The “bubble” is a selected city/arena where teams stay, practice, and play. Instead of travelling from city to city, much like the MLB, the leagues have decided to have designated areas of play.

The MLB has seen an increasing number of cases because of their lack of quarantine and social distancing because of travelling. The NBA and NHL bubble is a smart way to maintain quarantine and decrease the number of people interacting to allow for a safe environment. 

Some may say this is selfish on the leagues part by not allowing spectators but in result there has been no reported cases in both the NBA and the NHL making it a smart and rational decision. 

In both leagues, if a player or staff tests positive, they are required to quarantine for two weeks and get cleared to play again. 

The NHL and the NBA both had to postpone their seasons because of the CoronaVirus. Usually th eNBA would start their season in March with March Madness but as of March 11th their season was cancelled due to the pandemic. 

Shortly after the NBA’s season was cancelled the league put together an NBA Together Movement where they shared the facts and precautions the public should take, like staying home. This helped inspire NBA fans to stay home so that they could get to watch their favorite team again. 

However there is no in-person spectating, but live footage of games is available so that fans can still watch the games.  

So far neither the NBA or the NHL has had a positive test come back demonstrating the positive results of the bubble.

Some teams in other leagues. Like the MLB, have had numerous positive cases and have had to quarantine their teams and players postponing their season even more. 

Although the seasons have been postponed that doesn’t seem to have affected the players’ performance levels as some teams, like the Phoenix Suns going undefeated, have come back stronger than ever.