Nova Scotia

Cape Breton, Saint John hockey teams on hold due to COVID-19

The Saint John Sea Dogs and Cape Breton Eagles have postponed their next few games in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League after a Saint John staff member tested positive for COVID-19.

Saint John Sea Dogs say staff member tested positive, but didn't travel with team to Sydney this week

Margie Pottie wiped down the doors at Centre 200 in Sydney after every single person entered for the Cape Breton Eagles home opener in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League Oct. 2. (Tom Ayers/CBC)

The Saint John Sea Dogs and Cape Breton Eagles junior hockey teams are off the ice for a while after a Saint John staff member tested positive for COVID-19.

The Sea Dogs have suspended play for three games, while the Eagles have postponed their next two games while awaiting results of an investigation by Public Health officials.

The two Quebec Major Junior Hockey League teams played in Sydney on Wednesday night.

In separate statements, the teams said the Saint John staff member did not travel with the team to Cape Breton.

They said the Saint John players and staff are all being isolated and anyone who had contact with the infected staff member will be tested.

Nothing to do but wait

Paul MacDonald, general manager of the Centre 200 arena in Sydney, said there's nothing to do but wait for further instructions from the league.

"We've talked to our occupational health and safety folks and there really isn't much different for us because that person wasn't travelling," he said.

"The league will follow its protocols and we'll be informed as we go along, as will everybody else, and we may or may not have to make adjustments moving forward."

MacDonald said arena staff thoroughly clean the rink after each game and there is currently no concern about holding other events in the facility.

"I'm fully confident that everything is fine at Centre 200," he said.

The Eagles had been scheduled to play in Moncton on Friday and Saturday, but those games are now on hold.

The Sea Dogs become the fifth team in the league and the first in the Maritimes Division to announce a positive test.

Five of the six teams in the Maritimes Division have managed to play much of the regular season as scheduled, with some arenas in the Atlantic bubble even allowing fans to attend games.

The Moncton Wildcats saw their season suspended for two weeks due to New Brunswick government restrictions, but the team resumed play on Oct. 23. However, the Moncton region went back into an orange zone on Thursday, which could affect the Wildcats.

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About the Author

Tom Ayers

Reporter/Editor

Tom Ayers has been a reporter and editor for more than 30 years. He has spent the last 16 years covering Cape Breton and Nova Scotia stories. You can reach him at tom.ayers@cbc.ca.

With files from The Canadian Press

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