Less than a week into the regular season, it looks like the Nashville Predators are going to see their first game get postponed. They’re slated to play the second of a back-to-back against the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night.
The report was first brought out from Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic and TSN:
This is tough news for everyone involved, but shouldn’t come as a major shock to anyone. We’ve seen this in every other sport that’s not playing in a bubble. And asking players to play in a bubble environment for an entire season and be away from their families again was going to be a tall order to manage for the NHL.
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The Dallas Stars have been at the center of the COVID-19 concerns for the NHL season as they have still yet to play their first game, and were scheduled to open their season on Friday against the Nashville Predators.
The Stars had 17 players and staff test positive which delayed their season start that was supposed to come against the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning before playing the Predators.
Contact tracing will be the key here as the Predators shared the ice with the Hurricanes, who are dealing with this particular COVID-19 outbreak. Maybe the Predators will all come back negative before the game on Friday, but this has the potential to really make things tricky for the NHL if the Stars get pushed back even further from starting their season.
This will mean that the scheduled gets packed in even more than it already is, and point percentages are looking more and more like a reality to decide playoff positioning. It’s hard to fathom that every team will play the same number of games.
Let’s hope that the Predators can remain healthy and be good to go for Friday against the Dallas Stars. That will be another huge game as the Stars are one of those teams expected to be in the top-four of the division.
There’s not anything else we can do but wait to see if anyone has tested positive for the Predators. They were scheduled to have the next two days off before Friday’s game with Dallas, so we’ll have to patiently wait for more information to come out.