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COVID-19 issues affecting Capitals cause tonight's game to be postponed

The NHL cited COVID issues with the Caps as the reason for the postponement. No make-up date has been set.

NEW YORK — COVID-related issues that are affecting the Washington Capitals have prompted the NHL to postpone tonight's game at the Philadelphia Flyers, the league reported Tuesday afternoon.

A make-up date for the game has yet to be established.

The game was one of the last that was set to be played ahead of the league halting play early for the Christmas break. 

NHL is putting all teams on pause from Wednesday through Saturday. The move postpones five additional games scheduled for Thursday to make it a total of 49 this season. 

An increase of positive COVID-19 test results among players around the league also led to 10 teams closing practice facilities. This early start to the Christmas break also comes with teams being allowed to gather Sunday for testing and other activities. 

The season is set to resume with games next Monday.

It was also announced on Sunday that the NHL and its players association temporarily clamped down on teams crossing the Canadian border. Canadian-based teams will not play U.S.-based teams from Monday through Thursday, with those postponed games expected be rescheduled. The league said in a release the decision was made, in part, because of the “fluid nature of federal travel restrictions.”  

Roughly 10% of the 700-plus players were in the league’s virus protocol as of Saturday.

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“We will continue to play the 2021-22 regular season schedule,” the NHL and NHLPA said Sunday in a joint statement. 

“Although there has been a recent increase in positive COVID test results among players, coaches and hockey staff, there have been a low number of positive cases that have resulted in concerning symptoms or serious illness.”

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