Professional sports and coronavirus
The NFL had their first run-in with a COVID-19 outbreak when the season started. Patriots star quarterback Cam Newton, as well as several players from the Tennessee Titans, tested positive leading up to the week four games. This forced the Chiefs vs. Patriots game to be pushed from Sunday, Oct. 4 to Monday, Oct. 5 and the Titans vs. Steelers game to be rescheduled for later in the season. Initially, there was some panic following this outbreak, but the NFL was able to get it under control.
Earlier this summer, Major League Baseball had to navigate multiple outbreaks. The league had a plan if there had to be cancellations and rescheduling. Seeing that the post-season is going on right now, their plan clearly went well.
The NBA also found themselves dealing with a few cases of positive tests during their return to play in the NBA bubble. The NHL had zero positive tests during their playoff bubble.
The two leagues that refused to have a bubble-style return to play have had outbreaks that led to games being cancelled and rescheduled. Both the MLB and NFL were able to navigate these outbreaks, but the two leagues with the bubble-style return to play clearly were able to manage the virus better. It’s hard to ask players and staff to spend all this time away from their family in a bubble, but that extra step helped keep players safe and prevented any major outbreaks or scheduling conflicts.