BOSTON (CBS) — Boston sports teams will be able to practice again soon — with precautions. Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker announced Friday that Boston’s pro sports teams will be allowed to open their practice facilities on June 6, in compliance with the health and safety rules set in place by their respective leagues.
“I know we still aren’t to the point where we’ll have our pro sports teams back playing anything yet,” said Baker. “The leagues are obviously working hard to host games again, and I think we all hope that at some point, opening practice facilities will help make that happen a little sooner.”
This is great news for the Celtics and Bruins, who have been out of action since mid-March when the NBA and NHL halted play due to the coronavirus pandemic. The NHL announced plans to resume the season earlier this week, with the NBA expected to do the same in the near future.
Many cities have allowed limited practices to resume, but with Boston one of the hot spots of the outbreak, the city’s pro sports teams haven’t had that luxury. That will change soon.
The Celtics announced Friday afternoon that they will open the Auerbach Center for voluntary individual workouts on Monday, which will follow several strict protocols.
The Red Sox have had a limited amount of players working out and receiving treatment at the team’s spring training complex in Fort Myers, Florida.
The NFL has not released plans for training camp this year, but it was reported earlier this week that head coaches may be allowed to return to team facilities in the near future. Minicamps could also be scheduled for as early as mid-June.
The New England Revolution began to hold limited practices in Foxboro last week, with no return date set for Major League Soccer.
“The governor’s announcement today is an important step towards our goal of returning to competitive play this season and we appreciate his office’s efforts to get our players back on the field,” Revolution President Brian Bilello said after Baker’s announcement. “It means our players will have the opportunity to build their fitness in a controlled, safe environment under MLS protocols and the guidance of the team’s medical staff.”
Governor Baker said that while many fans are enjoying all the replays of the various Boston sports titles over the years — and there are many to choose from — the return of live sports will signify a big milestone.
“I think for all of us, live sports and especially pro sports, will be a great thing to see again,” he said. “Because not only will it be a significant milestone for those of us who are fans, but it will also send a big signal that we’ve continued to do all the things that we need to do to contain and control the virus and keep it in check. This reopening, of course, will also be gradual and requires a lot of patience from everyone.”