Stories Shaping Sports and Business: May 6th
NFL Will Refund Fans for Ticket Purchases ... If Necessary
NFL is releasing its 2020 schedule tomorrow night, but if the coronavirus does prevent the league from having fans at stadiums, the NFL has a plan in place for how to deal with ticket purchases. Instead of allowing each team to formulate their own policy, the league sent out a memo outlining a league-wide ticket refund policy.
In the memo obtained by the Associated Press, commissioner Roger Goodell clearly outlines fans will not be left footing the bill if games are played and fans are prohibited from attending. In the memo, Goodell says, "if a game is cancelled, or is played under conditions that prohibit fans from attending, anyone purchasing a ticket directly from the club will have the option of either receiving a full refund or applying the amount paid toward a future ticket purchase directly from the club.”
As for if the season will start as scheduled, Goodell said, "we will be prepared to make necessary adjustments just as we have in other contexts, such as the offseason program and the draft.”
Perhaps the biggest obstacle the NFL and other professional sports are facing is the state-by-state restrictions for social distancing. Since each state has its own policy and is re-opening in different phases and different times, inter-state travel and lodging is going to cause a major hurdle.
The NFL season is scheduled to kickoff on Thursday, September 10th.
Daily Coronavirus Update
There are more than 3.7 million cases of the virus worldwide, with over 259,000 deaths. The U.S. has over 1.2 million of those cases and 71,000 fatalities. The next closest death toll is in the U.K. with 30,000. The U.K. has also crossed 200,000 cases but is still behind Spain and Italy in case counts. Italy’s death toll is at 29,000, and Spain’s is at 25,000.
The World Health Organization is warning global leaders about easing social distancing guidelines too quickly. They noted that the risk of returning to a lockdown “remains very real.” There is no vaccine for the coronavirus currently. The WHO’s lead scientist on COVID-19 said, “This virus likes to find opportunities to spread and if these lockdown measures are lifted too quickly, the virus can take off.”
And we got ADP’s private-sector jobs report, which showed that private-sector companies shed 20.2 million jobs. That translates into more than 20 million Americans losing their jobs. We’ll get the jobs report on Friday.
TheStreet's Katherine Ross contributed to this report.