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- Canadian sports journalist
The Toronto Maple Leafs and Vancouver Canucks will not see the ice for the next little while.
With COVID-19 making its way through the entire league, the Leafs and Canucks will be having at least their next two scheduled games played at another date.
TOR/VAN won’t play tonight — nor tomorrow (Canucks/Coyotes…Leafs/Kraken).
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) December 18, 2021
Toronto and Vancouver are just two of 17 NHL teams that have at least one player in the league's COVID protocol. There are a total of 89 players on that list as of this writing. The Maple Leafs added players Jack Campbell, Travis Dermott and TJ Brodie, as well as head coach Sheldon Keefe and assistant Spencer Carbery on Saturday.
If a player enters protocol, it does not necessarily mean he has tested positive, but has made close contact with a positive case or was taken out of team activities out of caution.
After a slew of game postponements announced in the last seven days, reporters are feeling more confident that the rapid spread of the virus through over half of the league will force a league-wide pause. The Boston Bruins and Nashville Predators have already been shut down through the NHL's holiday break.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) December 18, 2021
Toronto has its next game scheduled as Thursday against the Blues, and the Canucks are currently scheduled for a Tuesday clash against the Sharks. With the holiday break approaching, who knows if those games will actually happen.
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