Sports are coming back, slowly - Teams here get OK to open facilities

VINCENT DAVIS | 5/28/2020, 12:26 a.m.
New York State governor Andrew Cuomo, and then New Jersey’s, Phil Murphy have given the OK for this area’s professional ...
Spencer Dinwiddie Bill Moore photo

New York State governor Andrew Cuomo, and then New Jersey’s, Phil Murphy have given the OK for this area’s professional sports teams to officially open, or re-open their training facilities located here in New York and in Jersey.

“Starting today, all the New York professional sports leagues will be able to begin training camps,” said the governor on Sunday afternoon.

“I believe sports can come back without having people in the stadium, without having people in the arena,” he said. “Do it! Do it! Work out the economics if you can. We want you up.”

Now able to re-open their facilities will be the Brooklyn Nets, the New York Knicks, the New York Rangers, the New York Islanders, New Jersey Devils and the New Jersey Red Bulls. Fans, each organization and their players are waiting for a decision by their leagues to determine how their 2019-2020 season will conclude.

This state’s three football teams––the New York Giants and the New York Jets whose facilities are in northern New Jersey, and the Buffalo Bills––are preparing to open their camps and new season on schedule in the coming weeks.

Although the New York Yankees and Mets play baseball in the Bronx and in Queens, both of their practice facilities are located in Florida.

This year’s Yankees and Mets’ season openings have been delayed since the end of March. The area’s basketball and hockey teams will be restarting their seasons which were halted in mid-March.

Brooklyn, the first team to get re-opened, issue a statement:

“Working in conjunction with state government officials and local health authorities, the Brooklyn Nets will open HSS Training Center for voluntary player workouts on Tuesday, May 26.

“The organization will strictly follow the protocols outlined by the NBA and infectious disease experts to ensure that all precautions are taken in order to maintain a safe and healthy environment for players and staff.”

Work outs are voluntary, but only four players will be allowed to work out together at one time with an assistant coach. Personnel must maintain social distancing.

When we last left off, the Nets were holding down the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference, a 30-and-34 record, 18 regular season games left after defeating the Los Angeles Lakers 104-102.

Brooklyn, on a three game win streak, with an injured Kyrie Irving, was on a four game West Coast road trip playing Golden State next, then the Clippers and Sacramento before returning home. They were also transitioning with an interim head coach, Jacque Vaughn, who replaced Kenny Atkinson who was surprisingly fired before departing to L.A.

Kevin Durant, on Brooklyn’s injured list the entire season, and three undisclosed players were diagnosed with the coronavirus early on after the NBA season was recessed on March 11th.