Friday, January 28, 2022

Winnipeg Jets considering playing home games elsewhere over COVID-19 restrictions in Manitoba, per report

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The Winnipeg Jets surveyed season-ticket holders about playing home games elsewhere on Thursday, according to Hockey Night in Canada’s Elliote Friedman. Saskatoon’s SaskTel Centre is reportedly a viable short-term venue. 

Winnipeg is operating under strict capacity limits while the country attempts to slow COVID-19’s spread. Manitoba, Winnipeg’s province, is limiting indoor ticketed sporting events to the lowest number between 50% capacity and 250 people. 

Saskatchewan, Saskatoon’s province, has yet to institute any capacity restrictions for indoor sporting events. Plus, the SaskTel Centre seats 15,000 – the same capacity as the Jets’ Canada Life Centre. 

The Jets are “doing their legwork” on a potential Saskatoon move, according to Freidman, for as long as Manitoba restricts attendance to indoor sporting events. 

Manitoba isn’t the only Canadian province making capacity changes. Ontario home to the Maple Leafs and Senators — set a 1,000-person limit for indoor sporting events, plus Alberta and British Columbia pivoted to 50% capacity. 

Last week, the NHL postponed nine games in Canada over the attendance restrictions. Three of those games involve Winnipeg: a Dec. 31 game against the Calgary Flames, a Jan. 8 game against the Seattle Kraken and a Jan. 10 game against the Minnesota Wild

The NHL, which paused its season entirely from Dec. 22-26, suspended and postponed all games involving U.S.-Canada travel from Dec. 20-23 over COVID-19 concerns. Overall, the coronavirus forced the NHL to postpone at least 70 games.

Winnipeg (16-11-5) is next slated to play at the Detroit Red Wings on Jan. 13. 

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