UNION, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — CBS2 has learned New Jersey is poised to allow the return of indoor youth sports.
Among them, basketball and ice hockey.
Sources say non-contact practice is the only thing that will be allowed under an executive order from Gov. Phil Murphy, CBS2’s Meg Baker reported Monday.
On Monday, she spoke to coach Silio Garcia at the Union Sports Arena.
“I mean it’s a little frustrating, but practice is good. Practice is where you get better. I mean, we definitely want to play games,” Garcia said.
Change is coming due in part to mounting pressure. The hockey community and some Republican lawmakers call ice hockey a medium-risk sport that is played in large facilities with strong ventilation systems to maintain ice quality. Players also do not share gear, and wear protective equipment from head to toe.
“Right now, if you walk into this rink they do a great job. The kids are all separated on the benches. The benches are all disinfected after every session. They are doing a very good job at this rink. I can’t speak for any other rink, but I sure every other rink is doing something similar,” Garcia said, adding when asked if he’s confident everyone will be safe, “They all wear masks while they are sitting down. They don’t wear their masks when they are on the ice. All the coaches wear masks.”
So, soon teams will be able to drop the puck and start their season.
According to the same sources, capacity limits will remain in effect. Other sports that may be able to start back up include basketball, cheerleading, group dance, rugby, boxing, judo, karate, taekwondo, and wrestling.
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