Hockey, including NHL, may be possible in B.C. this season, says Dr. Bonnie Henry - InfoNews

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Hockey, including NHL, may be possible in B.C. this season, says Dr. Bonnie Henry

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry with Health Minister Adrian Dix in the background
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Government of B.C.
May 04, 2020 - 3:00 PM

Hockey may not be off the books in the months ahead.

When asked today whether Vancouver could be a “pod city” for NHL games, Dr. Bonnie Henry offered a glimmer of hope.

“One of the groups that I've been part of for quite a long time is (a) group that looks at mass gatherings and we've been looking at how you can have this type of sporting event safely around the world,” Dr. Henry said.

“Obviously in Europe, one of their big issues is around the football season finishing, and there are ways that we can do it safely so I think it's an interesting idea…I think there are ways that we could look at having games being played perhaps in B.C.”

The parameters for the sport to get underway again, however, remain to be seen.

“I would not see there being an in ice audience for example but we could broadcast the games and there are ways that players can take precautions to ensure that there's physical distancing,” Dr. Henry said, adding that she loves hockey.

Yesterday, May 3, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed some hockey-related questions and noted that quarantine protocols would have to be followed if hockey was to resume.

"I think it's a question we'll have to look into," Trudeau said in a press briefing.

"Certainly at a strict minimum, anyone who arrives from another country will have to follow all the rules of quarantine in an extremely strict manner, but we're not there yet in our discussions with the NHL."

"We recognize that it's a possibility, but it depends on an enormous amount of things, and I don't want to speculate on this until there's more discussion."

Edmonton and Toronto were being looked at as possible "hockey pod" cities that could host the remainder of the NHL season during the summer months. Games would be played in air-conditioned arenas without fans.

Henry said she saw no reason the NHL couldn't return to Vancouver, so long as they follow protocols like wearing full face visors. 

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