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Sabres’ Coach Ralph Krueger Contracting COVID-19 Is An Issue For NHL

Buffalo Sabres head coach Ralph Krueger has tested positive for COVID-19 and this could be a huge issue for the NHL.

Things are going from bad to worse for the Buffalo Sabres. Following other COVID-related announcements, on Thursday, the team officially released a statement that head coach Ralph Krueger has tested positive for COVID-19. He will immediately enter COVID-19 protocol and isolate himself from the rest of the team.

Related: NHL COVID Protocol Absences Skyrocket, Incl. 17 Players From Devils

This update comes after the Sabres got bad news earlier in the week. The team learned that their games were being postponed through at least February 8 and four players were added to the league’s COVID Protocol list in Taylor Hall, Brandon Montour, Tobias Rieder and Rasmus Ristolainen.

This is concerning for the NHL as the Sabres played the New Jersey Devils in back-to-back games over the weekend and it was then learned that the Devils were having games postponed through at least Feb. 6 and that 17 players on the COVID Protocol list on Wednesday. The league issues it’s largest absences list to date on Wednesday and is now looking at ways to better protect the players and try to limit the spread of things, including making some adjustments to the arenas in which the players play. Among those changes is removing the glass behind the players’ benches.

NHL Needs to Try and Get Control of Things

As for Krueger, at 61, the NHL should be concerned about how this happened. If they can correlate his contracting the virus and other potential COVID-19 cases with the Sabres directly to playing this past weekend’s series with the Devils, this is not a good look.

Ralph Krueger Buffalo Sabres coach COVID-19 concerns

So too, that there’s talk the NHL will actually have to look at team winning percentages if some clubs don’t get all 56 games in, this could have a major impact on the standings. Just imagine how other organizations are going to react if it’s deemed a team who didn’t play nearly as often but got into the playoffs based on a percentage of wins shapes out the postseason.

Obviously, our primary concern is for Krueger who is in his second season as head coach of the Sabres. We wish him a speedy recovery.

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