NHL

Stars head coach Rick Bowness leaves game against Hurricanes due to COVID protocols

Dallas Stars coach Rick Bowness was pulled from behind the bench after two periods of the team's game Sunday night against the Carolina Hurricanes because of NHL COVID protocol.

Team believes it was a false positive test result for the virus

Dallas Stars coach Rick Bowness watches on during the second period of Sunday night's game against the Carolina Hurricanes. Bowness didn't return to the bench for the third period. (Gerry Broome/The Associated Press)

Dallas Stars coach Rick Bowness was pulled from behind the bench after two periods of the team's game Sunday night against the Carolina Hurricanes because of NHL COVID protocol.

General manager Jim Nill said the 66-year-old Bowness is fully vaccinated, has no symptoms and the team believes it was a false positive test result for the virus.

"He was a very low grade, but it is still positive," Nill said. "Out of safety concerns, he was pulled. But yes he has been vaccinated. His first vaccination was back sometime in January. He's had both vaccinations."

Nill said the team was in contact with the league office and that each side agreed to take Bowness out of the game as a precaution. Bowness is the league's oldest coach.

"Everybody decided this was the right situation because of Rick's situation, that he is a low risk, and because of the grade of the test," Nill said.

Nill said the team got PCR COVID-19 tests back earlier than expected, leading to this move, and that no other Stars staff member tested positive. Assistant John Stevens took over head coaching responsibilities for the remainder of the game.

"I know the Dallas Mavericks had this same situation with Rick Carlisle and there's numerous other people this has happened to," Nill said.

Stars goaltender Anton Khudobin, who led them to the Stanley Cup Final in the Edmonton bubble last year, was in league protocol with what the team also believes was a false positive.

"He came back negative, so same situation," Nill said. "He was a real weak positive test and went through his two protocol and he had two negatives and he is now cleared to travel with the team."

Add some “good” to your morning and evening.

A variety of newsletters you'll love, delivered straight to you.

Sign up now

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversationCreate account

Already have an account?

now