The NHL has announced that the 2019-20 season has been suspended.
#NHL season has been suspended. The league is on hiatus, with hope that it’s a short pause to protect player and staff health and safety.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) March 12, 2020
The @NHL pauses 2019-20 season. https://t.co/WMePei4clH pic.twitter.com/W5Hqmk3kX7— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) March 12, 2020
The decision follows the NBA swiftly suspending their season last night after Utah Jazz player Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus and a game between the Jazz and Oklahoma City Thunder was cancelled. Since then, MLS has suspended their season, and MLB is suspending training camp and potentially delaying the start of the season as well.
Before coming to this conclusion, the NHL updated last night that the league would consult with medical experts and have a conference call with owners, while the NHLPA would discuss with their executive committee.
Earlier today, the NHL advised against teams holding practices and meetings this morning before a final decision was made.
Given the uncertainty regarding next steps regarding the coronavirus, Clubs are advised not to conduct morning skates, practices or team meetings today.— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) March 12, 2020
Additionally, as reported by Pierre LeBrun, on-ice officials on the road were instructed to book flights home.
With the NHL’s suspension, there is no clarity yet on when and if the season will resume. Frank Seravalli reported that the league was exploring arena availability through the end of July while evaluating how to complete the 2019-20 season.
Hearing as part of the #NHL's due diligence process, teams have been asked to provide arena building availability through the end of July.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) March 12, 2020
We will keep updating you as more information becomes available.