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Canadian NHL Teams Want A Change to Quarantine Rules

The seven NHL Canadian teams are hoping for a rule change to the 14-day quarantine restrictions and a fighting chance to make trades.


TSN’s Darren Dreger reports that the seven Canadian NHL teams are looking for the government of Canada to throw them a bone. At this point, these franchises are hesitant to make trades because players coming in from outside the border would need to quarantine for 14 days. The clubs have appealed to the federal government to go back to the rules that were in place during training camp. At that time, a seven-day quarantine was in place for the NHL.

Related: Maple Leafs in Trade Market for a Forward

There was talk that in-season trades would be infrequent, but just a week into the season, a number of Canadian clubs have already struggled with their rosters as built. They’ve struggled even more finding ways to make improvements via traditional means.

For example, the Edmonton Oilers found out that goaltender Mike Smith was going to be unavailable, but they’ve not been able to land a suitable replacement. The waiver wire has been a constant song and dance routine that hasn’t gotten them anywhere. So too, the Winnipeg Jets just landed Pierre-Luc Dubois via trade, but he’ll be forced to sit out two weeks the way things stand. GM Kevin Cheveldayoff told Ron MacLean of Hockey Night In Canada that the team chartered a private flight to Winnipeg in the hopes it could reduce the quarantine by half the time, but as it stands now, that’s not potentially going to make a difference. The Toronto Maple Leafs are in the market for a forward, but their options will be limited after key injuries to forwards in their top nine.

Part of the issue for Canadian health officials will be that this situation is different than the one the NHL was dealing with during training camps. At that time, there was no out of province travel and restrictions on players associating with others was limited. Now, that’s not exactly the case.

MIke Smith Edmonton Oilers LTIR

What Are Canadian Teams Arguing?

The pitch by these seven clubs was that the strict testing regimen throughout the league, along with proof the acquired players haven’t tested positive at the time of the trade should be enough. Further to that, if the player can pass four separate tests with negative results, they should be considered safe.

If the teams are successful, it could drastically change the landscape of the trade market. At worst, a new player would miss four games with their new team instead of potentially close to 15% of the season. Four games is not ideal, but it’s not insurmountable and it’s certainly better than the current situation.

Next: Dubois Details Reasons He Asked for a Trade from Blue Jackets

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