BOSTON (CBS) — No one knows if there will even be an NHL season this year, with the league and players at a stalemate on how to proceed amid the COVID-19 pandemic. More bubble settings aren’t an option for a full season, but a handful of NHL teams are exploring the possibility of playing some of their home games outdoors.
That handful includes the Boston Bruins.
According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the Bruins are one of four teams that have looked into the possibility of playing their home games outdoors, as long as it allows them to have some fans in attendance. The Bruins confirmed that report to WBZ-TV on Thursday afternoon.
“We are in consistent contact with the NHL as well as officials from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the City of Boston, and are exploring all possible venue options for the upcoming season – including Fenway Park. At this point we are in the exploratory phase,” the Bruins told WBZ-TV .
Friedman writes that it’s a “long shot,” but it’s certainly an intriguing prospect for the Bruins. The Pittsburgh Penguins, L.A. Kings and Anaheim Ducks have also explored hosting outdoor games for the upcoming season, according to Friedman.
The Bruins have hosted a pair of Winter Classics over the last decade, hosting the Philadelphia Flyers at Fenway Park in 2010 and the Montreal Canadiens at Gillette Stadium in 2016.
But it also remains unclear if fans will be allowed to attend sporting events anytime soon in Boston, as neither indoor or outdoor sports venues have been cleared to host fans throughout the state. Gillette Stadium has already announced that it will not be hosting fans through the end of the Patriots’ season.
Friedman notes that players will have to approve of the venue changes, and not all players will be thrilled with the idea of going from indoor and outdoor games throughout the season.
But in their pursuit of getting fans to games, the Bruins and other teams are leaving no options unexplored.