COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — The National Hockey League announced Sunday that this Tuesday’s Columbus Blue Jackets game against the Chicago Blackhawks has been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns.
The game is one of three the NHL and the players’ union, the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) announced was canceled as the league emerged from a pause due to the pandemic. Those other two games are Wednesday’s Pittsburgh Penguins-Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins-Ottawa Senators games. The announcement states all other games scheduled for Dec. 28 and beyond remain on the schedule.
In addition, the two sides have agreed to bring back taxi squads, which allow teams to recall available players to the NHL with the goal of minimizing disruptions to the schedule due to COVID-19 issues.
The announcement states the taxi squads will remain with their respective teams up to and including the last game before the 2022 All-Star break. Each taxi squad will consist of up to six players, and any player selected to play in an NHL game must be added to that team’s active roster before the game.
The cancelation of Tuesday’s Blue Jackets game is the fifth cancelation due to COVID-19.
The team hasn’t played since Dec. 16 when the Jackets lost to the Oilers 5-2 in Edmonton.
The club reported positive COVID-19 tests in the camp last week which caused the cancellation of practices and morning skates. The Jackets were scheduled to play the Buffalo Sabres last Monday and Thursday with both games postponed before the NHL shutdown.
The next game on the Blue Jackets schedule is Thursday, when Columbus plays host to Nashville at the Nationwide Arena at 7 p.m.
So far this season, 67 NHL games have been canceled or postponed due to COVID-19.