It seems like things have turned for the worst for the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday as the city Mayor John Tory made an important announcement that will greatly impact the team.
Earlier today, the NHL extended its guideline for players and staff to self-quarantine until April 15. Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly confirmed the extension to the Associated Press in an email Tuesday. It adds an extra 11 days to the previous guidance of April 4, which Daly last week acknowledged was “a meaningless date” because of the rapidly changing situation.
However, Mayor John Tory has just announced that Toronto is cancelling all city events, event permits up to June 30 amid COVID-19 pandemic.
At first, we believe it meant that the Maple Leafs would have to be considered out of the postseason if ever the action resumes in May. The timeline for doing that still isn’t clear. There is still some hope for the Leafs and their fanbase seeing that last week, the NHL asked teams for arena availability dates through August.
UPDATE: However, a precision was later made on Tuesday stating that "Toronto's ban is exclusively city-led events. This does not affect NHL/NBA/etc. from returning. City exec of the Mayor's office told me via email, when asked if this affects pro sports:
"No, (the Mayor) was speaking City permitted events like parades and festivals."
The NHL said it will evaluate the situation 45 days into the CDC’s eight-week recommendation against gatherings of 50-plus people that runs until mid-May.
However, this announcement from the Toronto Mayor surely has Maple Leafs players and fans on edge.