More than two weeks have passed since all major sports leagues in the US have suspended or postponed games as a result of the measures undertaken across the country to combat the relentless spread of the coronavirus /Covid-19/ pandemic. All of the leagues remain hopeful to be able to restart as soon as the virus threat has retreated, but while for most it may be reasonable to expect to go back straight to normal, it may not be the case for the NFL.
Football Training Process Disrupted
Though the start of the regular 2020 season in the NFL is scheduled to kick off September 10, almost six months from now, some analysts doubt that there will be any season at all. Football requires significant amount of time for the teams to prepare and the current disruption to their training regimes and practices may have taken its toll already.
Most college teams have been forced to stop training as their spring practices were wiped out due to the self-isolation call and campuses were emptied from athletes, to help protect their health, at the expense of their fitness though.
There was nothing regular for this regular offseason and to expect a regular season would be a bit unrealistic. Even the regular draft would be anything but regular, as besides the draft date, April 23-25, nothing else will be the same.
“Because of the unique circumstances in our country today, the 2020 Draft will obviously need to be conducted in a different way. Already, we have cancelled all public events, we will not be bringing prospects and their families to the Draft, and the draft itself will be conducted and televised in a way that reflects current conditions.”Roger Goodell, Commissioner, NFL
Basketball Professionals Want To Crown A Champion
Elsewhere, the NBA players and club owners expect to be able to finish the season and crown a champion as the league suspended games March 12, shortly after a Utah Jazz player tested positive for the virus. Nine other players have tested positive since then forcing the league to take things cautiously now, with health concerns prevailing over any other issues.
MLB Missed Regular Season Start
The MLB that was scheduled to start March 26 but shortly after the NBA suspended its season decided to delay the start, is currently working with the CDC, the WHO and a number of infectious disease specialists, relying on expert advice on how to return the game action to the field, and as league Commissioner Rob Manfred suggests, a league restart in May will probably be the best-case scenario.
NHL Season Can Extend To The Summer
The NHL also has not ruled out finishing the current season after putting it on pause earlier this month, and as the 2020 Tokyo Olympics have been postponed, it left the league with a much bigger window to close its season, July and August now available.