Details of NHL’s 2021-2022 COVID protocols coming out via Friedman and Russo

If you can’t convince players who depend on their breathing for a living to take a vaccine that prevents them from drowning in their lungs with science, logic, reason, or with arguments for collective good…Hit ’em in the wallet.

Story coming shortly, but the NHL’s COVID protocols for 2021-22 were sent out today. A key detail is a mechanism for suspensions to unvaccinated players who cannot participate in team activities — on a per-day basis for as long as they are out. (There are some exceptions.)— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) September 2, 2021

Reading the NHL COVID-19 protocols, let’s just say vaccinated and unvaccinated players will be treated very differently this season.

Different protocols, no pay if unvaccinated player gets sick, 50% of costs associated will be charged to players’ share of HRR, etc.— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) September 2, 2021

NHL media that are fully vaccinated and masked will have access to players this season in the locker room, the NHL protocols say— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) September 2, 2021

Update: Here’s Friedman in article form:

The biggest news is a mechanism for teams to suspend unvaccinated players who are “unable to participate in club activities.” This includes situations where a player cannot travel because of local, provincial/state and/or federal regulations “upon return.” Such individuals would “forfeit the equivalent of one day’s pay for each day” they are precluded from participating.

It’s a major development considering the Canada/U.S. border and different rules/approaches across the NHL’s North American landscape. General managers were warned about this possibility at their virtual meeting in July and began informing players about the possibility.

There are exceptions — unvaccinated status based upon medical reasons; a conflict with “sincerely held religious beliefs;” establishment “on the basis of a balance of the probabilities,” COVID-19 “arised out of the course of employment as a hockey player;” or quarantine because of being a high-risk close contact.

If a fully vaccinated player is confirmed with a positive COVID test, his condition “shall be treated as a hockey-related injury for all purposes” under the CBA.

Unvaccinated players who are not exempted for the above reasons will not be paid if his team establishes, “on the basis of a balance of the probabilities, that the player failed to comply with the terms of this protocol in a manner that was reasonably related to his contraction of COVID-19 and/or any resulting or related illness.”


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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.

3 thoughts on “Details of NHL’s 2021-2022 COVID protocols coming out via Friedman and Russo”

  1. IMO, All sporting teams only fully vaccinated players can be on the roster.
    There some who get exemptions for health and other reasons.

    Very odd situation happened in Canada (name changed from Eskimos to Elks) played a CFL football game against the Toronto Argonauts. The following Monday 13 players tested positive for Covid and their next game was cancelled.
    It s not Mandatory to have full vaccination. CFL rosters contain imports (Non Canadian). My guess was the Toronto team mandated their all their players (Good Ownership!).

    Anyway, all sporting teams should have proof of being fully vaccinated.

    Right now some fans do not need to be fully Vaxxed and others not.

    Too much inconsistency! It is NOT a personal choice, JMO!

    The players send more time off the field and easily spread , most likely, the Delta Variant. In Canada most cases that are rising very fast. I don’t get why non vaxxers are not getting jabbed and keeping Covid as an 4th Wave.

  2. If you own a business there are some things you can require but some you cannot. I don’t like mandates very much but have come to the decision that getting a shot very rarely hurts while it very often helps.

    I have been getting the flu shot for years so this was just one more for me. So why take the chance? Get the shot.

    What we need is to have some law passed covering things like this. Right now we have bullying and threats that just dig in the heels of the reluctant.

    We have seatbelt laws and in some places helmet laws because if something happens to you society has to pay to care for you so we get a voice. Why not something similar for pandemics?

    Appropriately supervised and enforced one would hope.

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