Canucks pledged to get Health Department approval, avoiding move when NHL resumes

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If you are not convinced, the BC Ministry of Health is not the only jurisdiction that has not yet approved the RTP.

Ontario reported 2,316 COVID-19 cases on Sunday, including 486 in Toronto. Provincial health officials remain concerned about how this would affect a return to the NHL with the city locked out on Christmas Eve.

Quebec also set a record Sunday with 2,146 cases, including 625 in Montreal. This province has not yet approved the RTP. In British Columbia, 624 cases were reported as of Friday, including 106 in the Vancouver Coastal Health Region.

So what does all of this mean for the Canucks? They know it’s hard to fight for pucks on people.

They know the hardships businesses and families endured during COVID-19. They also know that the NHL has detailed protocols in place about which teams travel to and play in Vancouver. Most importantly, they know they must continue to work with provincial health authorities.

They have an exemption to train and skate at their facility, but the games are a different animal – even without fans in the stands.

Players and visiting staff will be limited to the Rogers Arena and their hotel. No seawall walks, no restaurant or pub tours and all hotel meals. No guests, no gymnastics and allocated seats on team charter flights and the bus. And, of course, daily tests.

The Canucks are hopeful of a resolution to host a Major League Baseball-style playoff – two games in three days – to cut travel and costs. They also hope to eventually feature fans, based on advice from health officials. But they also need to understand how a Canadian division will operate without approval from health authorities.

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