Good morning fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Ontario Hockey League, and people who love to be confused by government officials who have no idea what is even happening.
Here in Ontario we have a Minister for Sport in the provincial government and her name is Lisa MacLeod. She used to be an important member of the cabinet but her first role was so poorly done she got bumped all the way down to being the lunch room monitor of the cabinet.
MacLeod is the person who has been running around telling everyone that here can't be an Ontario Hockey League (OHL) season during the COVID-19 pandemic unless the players on opposing teams refrain from touching each other:
Official response from the OHL on the Minister of Sport's comments about bodychecking: “Until such time as we arrive at an agreed upon Return to Play protocol with the Government of Ontario, the League will have no further comment on the matter of body contact.”— Ryan Kennedy (@THNRyanKennedy) October 30, 2020
This announcement has been made several times and no mention of the players (who will not be isolated like the NHL players were, and will attend local high schools between games) sitting next to teammates on the benches, breathing heavily, sweating all over each other, and also playing close next to opponents along the boards, in corners, and at face offs. These acts are all ok and COVID-19 free, but if you bump into each other you're doomed.
Some of this talk could stem from the Quebec government mandating stricter fighting rules for the QMJHL's return to play in September - but the league was asking for a $20,000,000 bailout at the time so they got their money with strings attached.
Friday’s FTB: Is the OHL season DOA?
So yesterday Sportsnet wrote their latest piece on this issue, and then TSN's Rick Westhead tweeted about his conversation with the Minister and she replied, confirming that there will be no bodychecking:
Also this is correct. This isn’t @ExploreON, it is a health decision. I trust this matter is now settled. https://t.co/b8slHUBNic— Lisa MacLeod (@MacLeodLisa) October 30, 2020
Well, Lisa, turns out your boss has no idea what’s going on and what’s final:
A day after Ontario Sport Minister Lisa MacLeod said the matter was closed, Premier Ford says OHL hockey - if it’s played this season - may still feature bodychecking. https://t.co/HtX9pDqYX4— Rick Westhead (@rwesthead) November 1, 2020
With all of the twists and turns and contradictions, it’s a good thing the OHL has pushed it’s projected start date to February. This gives the Premier and his Minister a few months to walk down the hall at Queens Park and actually, you know, have a conversation about this.
Here’s what little other news I could gather:
Since it's Halloween, let's remember this iconic video pic.twitter.com/aqkRZ2YeaQ— Scott-tober 🎃 (@scotmaxw) October 31, 2020
I love this video, always and forever.
Why Kyle Dubas believes in Maple Leafs’ Joey Anderson
Because he cost Andreas Johnsson.
A First Look: "The Mighty Ducks"
I feel the reach for content this movie review was.
Speaking of reaching, that’s all I got for you!
Oh, and I hope you remembered to turn your clocks back an hour this morning.