By Johanna-Rosalye Luna
— Quietness. Empty stadiums. Tickets unused. Seasons on hold. Leagues cancelled. Tournaments unfinished. Playoffs called off. Champions undecided. Anxious fans. Athletes on standby. A world on lock down.
The world. Our world. Our home is in crisis. A worldwide pandemic, panic ensued. A new virus discovered spreading across the world. Unprecedented, unprepared, the novel corona virus [COVID-19] taking over countries one by one. The virus claiming lives and the health of many around the globe without indication as it progressed.
As COVID-19 spreads and medical professionals grappling the virus, cities, counties, provinces, states, and countries went on lock down. The world of sports placed on hold.
In a time of emergency, sports is known to bring cities, countries, nations, society, and the world together to overcome uncertainty. In any event , the Olympics, the World Cup, the World Series, Super Bowl, baseball, basketball, soccer unite society, bring hope, and restore faith when population is immobilized by catastrophe. However, this time is a difference story, the world of sports is static along with humanity.
As the novel corona virus spread throughout China, Asia, Europe, Europe sporting events were postponed, games started to be played without fans in attendance. However, as players started contracting the virus and testing positive, sporting events were postponed indefinitely. Although teams attempted to play in empty stadiums to help curb the spread in light of the pandemic, they were forced to shut down. COVID-19 continued to spread to other countries ultimately reaching the U.S.
Rudy Gobert became the first player in the NBA and in U.S. sports to test positive for COVID-19 on March 11. As news broke of Gobert, NBA commissioner Adam Silver took immediate action and suspended the NBA season indefinitely. Silver’s actions woke up America as other leagues around the nation followed suit postponing seasons and all sporting events. This was the soon enough reaction forcing America to take action and begin flattening the curve.
As days go by, not only athletes but the public continue to be diagnosed with COVID-19 as deaths are also on the rise. The world has come to a complete halt. After days, weeks and now soon to be months the leagues continue to be on a stand still. It is unknown when sports will return.
There is so much more that is still uncertain and questions unanswered. The NBA season is suspended indefinitely, unknown if the NBA Playoffs will take place. The NBA has announced that players salaries will be withheld if the season is cancelled. The NHL has extended the quarantine deadline for third time, now through April 30. The league has been exploring its options to conclude the season and play-off format. Major League Baseball Spring Training came to a screeching halt and Opening Day, well closed. It has been reported that MLB is considering to host the 2020 season and all 30 teams in Arizona with the possibly of a shortened season. Should MLB move forward with said plan, the teams would quarantine in hotels and play games at spring training ballparks. Games would be played without fans in attendance and weekly testing for COVID-19 would be in effect. In addition, players have agreed to take pro-rated salaries upon a shortened season. There is more to be determined with the MLB season and how it will unfold. The NFL season is still months away and undetermined how it will affected. The NFL Draft will be held virtually, intriguing how the event will unfold with the dynamics that make the NFL Draft. However soccer, NCAA, MMA, NASCAR, the Olympics among other sports have not been discussed and their effects. There is also the question of what the economic impact will be for the world of sports.
There is so much left unanswered. Time will tell how this will all unfold. As much as we all miss sports we have to do our part to stay safe and healthy before we can return to normality or as close as we can to it. Be patient, sports will return.