LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The National Hockey League said Thursday it would pause its season because of the growing threat from coronavirus.
“The NHL has been attempting to follow the mandates of health experts and local authorities, while preparing for any possible developments without taking premature or unnecessary measures,” the league said in a statement. “However, following last night’s news that an NBA player has tested positive for coronavirus – and given that our leagues share so many facilities and locker rooms and it now seems likely that some member of the NHL community would test positive at some point – it is no longer appropriate to try to continue to play games at this time.”
The NHL had already advised clubs to not conduct morning skates, practices or team meetings Thursday.
The announcement came after the NBA suspended its season Wednesday after aleast two Utah Jazz players tested positive for coronavirus.
Neither the Los Angeles Kings or the Anaheim Ducks were scheduled to play Thursday night, but the Kings did play the Washington Senators on Wednesday night, and were scheduled to play the Ducks on Saturday.
The NHL did not give a timeline as to when its season might resume.
On Thursday evening, the Staples Center issued a statement that said it would suspend all Lakers, Clippers and Kings games scheduled to be held at the stadium as well as the NCAA West Regional Tournament — which was canceled Thursday by the NCAA.
“We realize that our fans and guests have a variety of questions regarding their ticket purchases for various events,” the stadium said in a statement. “We are asking that all fans please hold on to their tickets as we work with our teams and partners on refund policies. We appreciate your patience during this time, and we will continue to update and provide details as they become available on our website.”
Staples Center said it remained in close contact with the Los Angeles County Department of Health and expected further direction in the coming days.