The NHL is already to go ahead with the playoffs for this season. Yet, right as everything was beginning to open back up things take a turn for the worse. What seems like only a few days after the NHL began “Phase 2” of their return to play plan, multiple stories have come out. There have been Boston Bruins players testing positive for COVID-19. The Tampa Bay Lightning shutting down their facilities due to players and team staff testing positive for COVID-19. After all of that, it is now being reported that Toronto Maple Leafs superstar Auston Matthews has tested positive for COVID-19 too.
— steve simmons (@simmonssteve) June 19, 2020
Auston Matthews Positive with COVID-19
It has been reported, and later confirmed by a local Arizona sports reporter Cameron Cox, that Auston Matthews along with a handful of other unidentified Arizona Coyotes players has tested positive. With the news of testing positive, Matthews has put himself into quarantine in his home in Arizona. With the new testing protocols in place, Matthews will have to undergo a series of follow-up exams as well. He will go into quarantine, while everyone who was in contact with him will also be placed under quarantine.
Maple Leafs starting goaltender Frederik Andersen was living with Auston Matthews for an extended amount of time during the NHL pause. He has been reported as testing negative for COVID-19.
What Will Happen to the Playoffs?
Now that there have been multiple reports from inside the NHL of players testing positive for the coronavirus, many people are wondering what will happen with this year’s playoffs. Matthews is the first really big-name player to test positive for COVID-19. This may lead to some debate about what to do. The NHL and NHLPA will surely re-look the situation they are putting their players in. However, it is obvious that both players and fans want the NHL season to resume. Yet, if things are to continue, the NHL should take a step back and reanalyze the situation moving forward.