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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Sunday that if the NHL season resumes, players who fly into Canada while the border remains closed would need to follow quarantine policies due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
"I think it's a question we'll have to look into," Trudeau said in a press briefing, according to The Canadian Press. "Certainly, at a strict minimum, anyone who arrives from another country will have to follow all the rules of quarantine in an extremely strict manner, but we're not there yet in our discussions with the NHL.
"We recognize that it's a possibility, but it depends on an enormous amount of things, and I don't want to speculate on this until there's more discussion."
The NHL has reportedly discussed stationing teams in up to four hub cities not deemed to be coronavirus hotspots in order to complete its season, with Toronto and Columbus, Ohio, apparently being considered the front-runners. Edmonton is also reportedly bidding to host some of the season's remaining games.
On Wednesday, the NHL and NHLPA said in a joint statement that they may be able to move onto "Phase 2" of a return plan by mid-to-late-May. At that point, teams would be allowed to begin opening practice facilities for small group workouts.
It was reported in April that NHL commissioner Gary Bettman had plans to connect directly with Trudeau to discuss potential testing options for the coronavirus.
Eight NHL players had tested positive for COVID-19, but all have since recovered.