Did you know that we are witnessing Phase 1 of the NHL’s plan during the Great Pause of 2020? Yep, we are. Phase 1 started out as a two-week self-quarantine of hockey players and staff. It was revised and extended, allowing for players to return to their homes, even out of the country. Since we’re nearing the end of Phase 1 (at some point), the NHL released a statement of very vague parameters for Phase 2: The Slow Reopening!
So what does Phase 2 entail? Well, mainly it’s a return to the ice by some players in some places but not necessarily the rumored arenas of the past couple of weeks. The focus seems to be on small groups. When? well, no one really knows but they make an approximate time period.
Below is the meat of the statement:
The precise date of transition to Phase 2, during which Players might return to small group activities in NHL Club training facilities, remains undetermined. However, provided that conditions continue to trend favorably – and, subject to potential competitive concerns as between disparately situated markets – we believe we may be able to move to Phase 2 at some point in the mid-to-later portion of May. Specific guidelines governing Player and Hockey Staff activity would be provided at that time. In the meantime, we expect Players and Hockey Staff to continue to adhere to the recommended guidelines put in place when the season was paused on March 12.
So perhaps within a month, players will be able to return to practice in small groups on the ice. I can only guess that Phase 3 involves training camp, Phase 4: End of Regular Season, Phase 5: Judgement Day followed by Phase 6: Laser Beams!