NHL tells players to return home, self-quarantine

NHL players can return to their permanent homes, if outside their city of play, but should self-quarantine, the league advised the players in a memo issued Monday.

That includes locales outside of North America, if travel is possible, the league said.

The league initially had told players to remain in their home cities.

Still, the league advised players to stay in their homes under self-quarantine because of the coronavirus pandemic through March 27 unless local regulations have a longer requirement. Players should report any symptoms they are having to their teams, as well as the results of any medical tests they might take.

The NHL said that at the end of the self-quarantine, the league will consider allowing clubs to reopen their facilities and allow training for small groups of players at a time or offseason medical treatment, if conditions permit it.

Commissioner Gary Bettman said last week that he hoped the NHL could hold the Stanley Cup playoffs this season, and toward that end, the memo said the league will consider opening a training camp in 45 days. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advised Sunday that there should be no assembly of groups of people larger than 50 for the next eight weeks.

The earliest training camps could open would be late April, under these guidelines, but health conditions will dictate that.

In the interim, several NHL teams and players sent messages to fans this weekend via social media.

New York Rangers forward Mika Zibanejad shared a photo of himself and his teammates on the ice, writing: “Missing these moments but this is bigger than hockey! Make sure you guys take care of yourself and each other! Stay safe”

--Field Level Media