LONDON, ONT. – Not that long ago, nearly 10,000 hockey fans joined Budweiser Gardens on Friday nights for a game.
That scenario may not return anytime soon, but London Knights management is still hoping an OHL season can be played.
“We are patiently waiting and it looks positive,” said Rob Simpson, associate general manager of the Knights. “We’re like everyone else and we’re going to wait for the Ontario Hockey League to send us a date when we’re going to come back and what it’s going to look like.
Simpson feels for players who stay fit and wait to hit the ice for a game.
“Especially for those trying to land contracts or in their draft year trying to get noticed or even a 16-year-old who wants his first OHL experience,” says Simpson.
“They really don’t know when the end date will be, which makes it even more difficult for them.”
Even with the OHL season on the line, Simpson says a Memorial Cup this year is unlikely simply because of the logistics involved during the pandemic.
Always whether this season is lost or not, his fingers crossed that they can return to a new normal in the fall.
“With the vaccinations progressing, I hope we can get back to a regular season in October.”
In recent weeks, Lisa MacLeod, Ontario’s sports minister, has said a plan for a shortened season is underway.