January 15th, 2021

B.C. approves NHL games, becoming second province to OK play

By The Canadian Press on January 3, 2021.

VANCOUVER – The Vancouver Canucks have been given the go ahead to play in British Columbia this season.

B.C. Premier John Horgan announced the news on Twitter on Sunday, saying he had spoken to team owner Francesco Aquillini about the NHL’s return to play plans and believes the enhanced health measures mean games can be played safely.

Canucks general manager Jim Benning told reporters earlier on Sunday that it was the team’s understanding it would be able to play home games at Vancouver’s Rogers Arena this year.

B.C. is the second province to officially approve NHL games, coming after Alberta gave the OK on Dec. 25 following the review of protocols outlined in the league’s return-to-play plan, along with some additional enhancements.

Last week, a health official in Manitoba told The Canadian Press that the province was working toward approving games being played in Winnipeg. Officials in Ontario and Quebec have not commented on whether competition has been approved for the three teams in those provinces.

The NHL season is set to resume on Jan. 13 with a new North Division that will see the seven Canadian franchises play one another instead of crossing into the United States for games.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 3, 2021.

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