Sports postponements are turning into cancellations

This quarantine has been going on for over a week now. Honestly, I’ve lost count of exactly how many days. I spent the first 6 hours of my day on Saturday thinking it was Monday. I’ve spent my days playing Xbox and drinking. I mean how else is anybody supposed to kill time locked up at home? But the longer this goes on, the worse news gets about the immediate future of sports.

The CHL just announced the cancellation of the playoffs for the WHL, OHL and QMJHL playoffs as well as the Memorial Cup. It sucks missing out on playoff hockey, but this impacts my life a bit more directly since I’ve been volunteering with the Guelph Storm all season long. It sucks having my year with them end so suddenly. I’ve mentioned it before, but trying to work in sports right now is absolutely brutal. It’s tough enough to break in, most of the time you have to start for free, and now all of these leagues are being forced to postpone and cancel games because of this global pandemic and it’s making it even harder to find work.

But I know I’m not the only person affected by this. It sucks for the fans who spend their money to buy tickets to see these games every Friday night and Sunday afternoon. It sucks for the organization that is now losing money because they aren’t selling tickets. And it sucks for the players that have worked all season long to get to this point only to have it taken away from them. The Storm had 5 games left on their schedule before the league announced games would be postponed, but they had a playoff spot secured and attention was definitely on what this team could do in the playoffs after a miracle run last season. Good news for the team is that they’re technically still the reigning OHL champions.

Now that I’ve gotten this personal impact of sport cancellations off my chest, these cancellations have officially reached the biggest possible stage. The IOC announced that the 2020 Olympics, which were scheduled to be in Japan this summer, have been postponed until summer 2021.

Even before this was announced, Team Canada announced that their athletes wouldn’t be attending these games due to the COVID-19 outbreak. While it’s obviously the right call, these last couple of weeks without sports have made me realize how much better my life is with sports. Yeah, they give me somewhere to work (volunteer), and with nothing going on I have a lot less to write about, but I miss even just getting to sit around and watch games. I miss going out to grab wings and a beer and watch a hockey game, or to sit and watch soccer on a Saturday morning. It just feels like there’s a lot less going on. Sports have always been a distraction from real life, and I think we could all use a distraction right about now.

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