Coronavirus: Sharks defend playing home games amid COVID-19 concerns


San Jose Sharks president Jonathan Becher stands by the decision the team made to play three NHL home games after the United States recommended banning events with large numbers of people due to coronavirus.

On March 5, Santa Clara County asked for mass gatherings to be postponed or cancelled in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The Sharks went ahead with a scheduled home game that evening, as well as home fixtures against the Ottawa Senators on March 7 and Colorado Avalanche on March 8.

Of the four NHL players who have tested positive for COVID-19, two are from the Senators and two are from the Avalanche.

The NHL ended up suspending play on March 12.

Becher said "early March felt a lot different than we are today and we were all making the best decision we could with the information we had at the time."

The Sharks said extra cleaning precautions were taken ahead of those games and that fans who were sick or at high risk for COVID-19 were asked not to attend.

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