As NHL training camps officially opened on Monday, there were several COVID-19 setbacks.
The Montreal Canadiens reportedly had “at least three” players test positive for coronavirus. The Pittsburgh Penguins also announced that nine players from their training camp roster are temporarily sidelined for precautionary reasons.
The players were exposed to an individual who had contact with a person who tested positive for COVID-19.
The Penguins’ full statement reads:
The Pittsburgh Penguins will be voluntarily sidelining nine players from their training camp roster due to potential secondary exposure to an individual who had contact with a person that has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. The team learned of the positive secondary exposure on Sunday, July 12. The decision to isolate this group of players was made out of an abundance of caution in an effort to avoid exposure to anyone else within the organization. The nine players will not participate until they are deemed safe in accordance with the NHL protocol and further test results.
The Penguins did not specify how long the players will be in isolation, and the NHL’s Phase 3 Return to Play plan did not have protocols for potential secondary exposure.
If a player is directly exposed to an infected person, their status will be determined by a medical expert and may include polymerise chain reaction (PCR) testing. PCR tests are used to detect the presence of an antigen, rather than antibodies.
The Penguins’ and Canadiens’ cases continue to illustrate just how difficult bringing sports back is during a pandemic.
Stay safe out there, boys.
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