BREAKING NEWS: Federal Government approves travel exemption Canada-US for Stanley cup playoffs

Published June 6, 2021 at 2:03 PM

The exemption allows the winner of the NHL's all-Canadian division and its U.S. opponent to cross the border without quarantine during the Stanley Cup semifinals and finals.

When TSN and The Canadian Press first reported the possibility of an exemption in late May, federal sources stressed that the health risk to the Canadian public was low. Vaccination rates are high among NHL players and the travelling parties that accompany teams. There will be frequent testing requirements of all players, and the teams will be forced to stay in a bubble between team hotels and the rinks when in Canada.

The Montreal Canadiens are currently leading the Winnipeg Jets 2-0 in the North Division final. The winner of that series will face one of three U.S. division winners in the league semifinals. The two semifinal winners will square off for the Stanley Cup.

The exemption would mark the first time regular cross-border travel occurs in the NHL during the pandemic. Last summer, the NHL concluded its season with hubs in Toronto and Edmonton, with all U.S. teams crossing the border just once before departing.

NHL personnel were granted a special dispensation before this year's trade deadline in April to serve only a seven-day quarantine. The federal government also issued an exemption to the mandatory 14-day quarantine period for NHL players and team staff to return to Canada for training camp under "national interest grounds" in December.

Credit: CBC
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