Feds reviewing plan that would allow Raptors to play in Canada again
Published Tuesday, November 17, 2020 8:52PM EST
The federal government says it is reviewing a proposal that would allow the Toronto Raptors to play in Canada again when the new NBA season starts.
In a statement to CTV News Toronto Tuesday evening, Health Minister Patty Hajdu’s office said the government has received a proposal and is considering it.
“The health and safety of Canadians is our government’s top priority and reducing the spread of COVID-19 must always be top of mind,” the statement reads. “We understand that many Canadians are eager to see their favourite professional teams return to play.
“We are reviewing a proposal from the NBA and the Toronto Raptors for the resumption of NBA basketball in Canada. We have been in contact with the Raptors and will continue to engage with them in the coming weeks.”
The question of where the Raptors will play their upcoming season has been on the minds of many basketball fans in recent weeks.
The team has said that they are working on parallel tracks to make plans for playing at home in Canada or at a temporary home in the U.S. if necessary.
COVID-19 restrictions, particularly the federal government’s 14-day quarantine rule for returning travelers, have made it difficult to resume cross-border sports.
Case counts have also been on the rise on both sides of the border recently, prompting tougher rather than loosened restrictions.
Any proposal to restart NBA play in Canada has to include a comprehensive public health plan, as well as written support from provincial public health officials before the Public Health Agency of Canada looks at it.