How COVID-19 is affecting sports around the globe

Donald Thai, Sports Writer

The novel Coronavirus has affected everyone in nearly every nation; from young children to elderly people. COVID-19 has significantly impacted sports. Worldwide, sporting events are getting canceled or officials have been limiting the number of fans in the arena. Sporting officials are trying to prevent large gatherings in arenas, stadiums, or gyms. In the United States, nearly all of the professional sports have been postponed indefinitely until further notice. This list includes the MLS, NBA, MLB, NHL, and many others. NCAA basketball has effectively halted conference tournaments and the college basketball tournament known as March Madness.  Even at the high school level, sporting events have been canceled. Just a couple of days ago, the Minnesota State High School League started limiting sporting events and canceled the boys’ and girls’ state basketball tournament. This has put an end to the boys’ and girls’ basketball season around the state. Globally, countries have also been canceling games and closing arenas. Many soccer leagues around Europe have completely stopped play or teams are deciding to play without the attendance of fans. Players have been affected just as much as the fans. In fact, players are also concerned with contracting the Coronavirus. Players have been taking extra precautionary measures to protect themselves. They have also taken numerous actions to help fight the novel disease. 

 

The MLS (Major League Soccer) had just begun their season. The Minnesota United had their home opener just recently. Unfortunately, just after two weeks after the start of the regular season, the league decided to close its doors indefinitely. 

 

The NBA (National Basketball Association) just passed the middle of the regular season before commissioner Adam Silver declared that the league was going to cancel all games indefinitely. Just about a week after closing its arenas, the league started to take precautionary measures by asking its players to avoid high-fives with fans in the stands. Many players even stopped signing autographs for fans. A couple of days ago, the first NBA player, Rudy Gobert. was diagnosed with the Coronavirus. This had happened just before the tipoff of a game and after that, the game was terminated. Since the season has been postponed, players have started to give money to staff in the arenas. First, it started with the Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban who decided that he was going to help pay the checks of his staff in the arena. After that, it became a domino effect. Players announced that they were going to donate money to the workers in the organization. Utah Jazz center, Rudy Gobert, announced that he would donate $500,000 to help fight COVID-19. Unfortunately for the NBA, the league is not sure where their season will be headed next. 

 

The MLB (Major League Baseball) were in the middle of preseason games once the league decided to cancel its games. The Minnesota Twins have been down in Fort Myers, Florida, training for their regular season. The first game of the regular season was to be played on March 26th, but the league is not sure if that will happen. They have suspended the start of their season for at least two weeks. 

 

The NHL (National Hockey League) were nearing the end of the season once the league decided to cancel its games. The Minnesota Wild were in the hunt for a playoff spot this year. At such an odd spot of the year, the league is not sure what steps will be taken next. 

 

With all the sudden changes in sports because of the coronavirus, players and fans are uncertain about what will happen next. Fans are disappointed just as much as players are. Every sports season has been put on hold causing not only problems for the people, but also causing problems for businesses as well. Sports channels have been needing to adapt to the changes. No one knows what will be occurring in the future, but people can predict that there will be many changes to the world-wide sports industry.