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Donald Fehr Cautiously Looking Ahead

from Michael Traikos of the National Post,

As Donald Fehr looks towards the new calendar year and all the promise of hope that it brings, the head of the National Hockey League Players’ Association is optimistic about what lies ahead.

Fehr believes that the shortened regular season will begin as planned on Jan. 13. He is confident that, with the global administration of a vaccine for COVID-19, more and more fans will be allowed into hockey arenas by the time the NHL playoffs start in the spring. And he expects that whatever is waiting around the corner — whether it’s a rash of positive cases or provincial closures or something even worse — that the league and the players will be able to adapt and roll with the punches.

At the same time, he’s also not leaving anything to chance.

“I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed, as we all are,” Fehr said in a phone interview with Postmedia. “Stay out of harm’s way. Don’t do anything stupid just because things are starting to look better. But we’ve been through so much, it’s time for some good luck.”...

As much as the NHL would like to point to the success of the playoffs as proof that the league can begin the regular season in the middle of a pandemic, what the league has planned is not exactly bubble hockey.

There won’t be any hub cities this time around. Teams will be traveling across state and provincial lines, entering areas that have varying degrees of COVID-19. And they will be doing it for more than just a couple of months.

It seems inevitable that players are going to contract the virus and that some games will probably get postponed. But with the vaccine now available, it also seems inevitable that the cases within Canada and the U.S. will soon start to decrease.

Then again, it might not happen as quickly as everyone wants it to.

What if things don’t get better right away? What if they get worse? What if the players, who will be sharing buildings with the NBA, start contracting the coronavirus at levels that force the league into not only postponing games but also re-evaluating its plan on playing out the season?

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink


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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com