So the NHL has, at last, announced plans for resumption of the 2019-2020 season. Praise be!
For me, the cessation of sports because of the Coronavirus pandemic has been a unique experience. It’s different from the lockouts of recent years, in that we new the NHL would inevitably return. With the virus, everything is uncharted territory. Would sports be forced to close their doors forever? What is/will be the new normal? Can we get back to life as we knew it? (I sure hope so.)
The NHL will be the first major league to attempt a return. They are pioneers, and I have to think it will be good for the league, in that the focus of the sports world will be on the NHL for the next several weeks.
The complete plan has yet to be approved by the NHLPA; today’s announcement is a great sign of momentum toward the actual execution of the plan to return. There’s a lot riding on the NHL: A successful, COVID-free playoffs will build confidence in the success of sports to resume in this environment. And no doubt it will embolden the other leagues to forge ahead with their own plans to resume operations.
This news comes on the sane day that MLB presented an offer to its players regarding payment for the 2020 season. Early reactions are not encouraging. Labor relations in MLB tense these days, as baseball players are extraordinarily jealous of their astronomical salaries, and resistant to extreme pay cuts. In my opinion, MLB salaries are out of control and have to be reigned in at some point, but that’s for another time.
I’m very excited. This is the first semi-concrete plan to start a sports league again, and while there are a lot of details to work out still, I’m very hopeful this will get done.
We have to get sports back. We have to get life back. Months on end of no physical contact or social interaction is no way to live. Months on end of no sports is no way to live either.