Hockey will have a different look when it returns, say officials of Hockey Canada.
In an open letter to Canadians, Hockey Canada's top officials have provided an overview of its approach to relaunching the sport.
"Hockey Canada and its members are diligently working on a multifaceted return-to-hockey plan that will happen when, and only when, provincial and territorial governments and health authorities deem it safe to do so," states the letter.
The national body is using the return to hockey framework as an opportunity to improve everything from health and safety regulations to communications, season structure, customer engagement, and national teams.
"This is not a race to be first on the ice with whatever it looks like," says Hockey Canada CEO Tom Renney, "This is, in fact, a race to be right. That includes our protocols and procedures. It includes all of those requirements to allow a parent, coach and potential an official to be a part of this to the point where we have the resources in place."
Safety measures are top of mind worldwide due to the COVID-19, and it's no different with Hockey Canada.
"I think it's safe to say that from the regulation protocol when we return there will be some changes, no question of that," says Renney. "How long that lasts remains to be seen. Certainly, we are looking at all of that with the one thing in mind, the health and safety of everyone participating."
Jointly, the officials say it will unfold in phases and at different times across the country, based upon direction from health authorities.
"We ask for patience as we continue to work towards ensuring hockey plays its role in bringing the sports community back."