According to Helen St. James, Detroit Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman says that forward Tyler Bertuzzi has declined to be vaccinated for COVID-19. He will be at camp, but as per NHL and NHLPA guidelines that limit what he can do when crossing the border for games, he will not travel to games in Canada.
Because he is unvaccinated, Bertuzzi will not be able to play games in Canada until he gets the COVID-19 vaccine. NHL rules now require unvaccinated players to quarantine for 14 days.
Related: Holland Talks Keith Missing Camp, Says One More Player Unvaccinated
Yzerman said they’re not in a position to force anyone to get vaccinated and respects that Bertuzzi has a choice in the matter. At the same time, he noted that he was vaccinated, as was his family and he would leave it at that. From some reports, Yzerman was professional in his response, but one would have to imagine the GM wasn’t too pleased to have to deliver that news. That said, Bertuzzi is expected to be at training camp and will play games that do not require travel across the border.
As per Stephen Whyno of the Associated Press, the Red Wings play eight games in Canada. He adds that NHL salaries are determined by days not games, but Tyler Bertuzzi will forfeit over $400,000 this season if he continues to decline vaccination. And that’s before any other time missed for COVID-19.
Obviously, Red Wings fans will ask why the player would elect not to get the vaccine when he knows he’s giving up this much money and his absence will be felt throughout the lineup. Of the players who have been revealed thus far in the NHL to have not gotten the vaccine, Bertuzzi is among the highest-paid. Bertuzzi just signed a two-year contract with Detroit over the summer.
Next: Morgan Rielly Talks Likelihood He’ll Return to Maple Leafs Next Season
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September 23, 2021 at 7:19 am
I wonder where the captain and assistants were when the topic first came up about Bertuzzi not getting based? I have to think the players would be the ones talking to him about supporting his teammates. Leadership begins with the guys who play the game together, how come Larkin didn’t have some talks with him?
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