Publish date:

NHL Commissioner Bettman Says Just Four Players Unvaccinated

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said the league has only four unvaccinated players as it opened up the 2021-22 season on Tuesday.
Gary Bettman

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said the league has only four unvaccinated players as it opens up the 2021-22 season.

Bettman was in attendance for the regular-season opener between the back to back Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday night.

“Everybody banding together to do the right thing,” Bettman said. “Maybe that’s why hockey is the ultimate team sport.”

Bettman said NHL officials and all the personnel that come into contact with the players are vaccinated.

““It’s something we take seriously,” Bettman said. “Health and safety has been and will continue to be paramount.”

There are still COVID-19 cases involving players that are fully vaccinated.

The expansion Seattle Kraken will be missing a number of players due to Covid-19 protocols for their first game Tuesday night at Las Vegas.

The Lightning have expressed a continuing interest in hosting an outdoor game in Tampa, Florida but the weather conditions in the state remain a major obstacle.

“Do I have severe weather concerns, the answer is yes,” Bettman said. “Weather, particularly in a warm climate can be a challenge, and the safety of the players is paramount. If it were doable, it would be great. We’re just not sure it’s doable because of the weather.”

Tags
terms:

TOP HEADLINES

Nikita Kucherov
Play

The Lightning Will be Fine Without Nikita Kucherov

Tampa Bay proved they can still be a feared combatant without Kucherov. Even with the changes during the off-season, the Lightning should be in good shape.

Evander Kane
Play

Evander Kane Given 21-Game Suspension for Violating NHL's COVID-19 Protocol

San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane has been suspended for 21 games until Nov. 30 for violating the NHL's COVID-19 protocol.

Nikita Kucherov
Play

Lightning’s Kucherov out Indefinitely with Lower-Body Injury

Tampa Bay Lightning star Nikita Kucherov will be out indefinitely with a lower-body injury he suffered against the Washington Capitals last weekend.