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These Are Unprecedented Times, But Preds Hockey Still Unites Us All

With NHL Season Paused Due to Coronavirus, Look for Hope in Hockey Community

by Brooks Bratten @brooksbratten / Senior Communications & Content Coordinator

I don't know the exact number, but after five-plus seasons, I'm sure I've probably taken hundreds of bus rides on the road with the Predators.

Arenas, hotels, airports - you name it, we've been there.

So, as we all rode to Pearson International in Toronto on Thursday afternoon - players coaches, trainers, equipment staff, broadcasters and the like - it didn't seem all that out of the ordinary.

Boarding the plane and heading back to Nashville didn't incite fear, anger, uneasiness or anything of that nature, at least not outwardly. Movies were watched, books were read, cards were played and dinners were consumed just like always.

Like we had another game to go to soon. Another practice. Another anything.

But with the pause put on the NHL season on Thursday due to the ongoing spread of the coronavirus, the future seems much more uncertain than it ever has before.

The Preds, along with the rest of the League - and the entirety of the sports world on this continent, for that matter - is hopeful to resume play as soon and as safely as possible. Unfortunately, there's simply no way to know when that will be.

At a time that is widely regarded as one of the best on the calendar if you're a fan of sport - March Madness, playoff races in the NHL and NBA, The Masters and so many other competitions that give us so much joy - we're instead asking questions that don't seem to have clear answers.

From a Predators and Bridgestone Arena standpoint, things will be much quieter than normal. In addition to the pause in the NHL season, the Southeastern Conference Basketball Tournament has been cancelled, and two concerts - Pearl Jam and Zac Brown Band - have already been postponed, with more certain to follow.

Additionally, any Predators team and fan activities, including the Preds & Threads Fashion Show, the Predators Wine Festival & Tasting, team watch parties and such have also been cancelled for the time being.

Indeed, these are unprecedented times. Most of us have never seen anything like this in our lifetimes, and it is probably unlikely most of us ever will again.

Usually in moments like this, we look to sports as an escape from the rigors of everyday life. That's not entirely possible right now. Not having Predators hockey right now is difficult. Trust me, I get it.

But, for all the uncertainty the last couple of days has delivered, there are also a couple of things we still know to be true.

For one, we are going to make it through this at some point. The games, the goals, the saves, the chants, they'll all be back soon. Secondly, we may not have the thrill of live competition to bring us together right now, but the hockey community is a strong one - and we're all lucky enough to be a part of it.

No matter what the next few days, weeks or months bring, we still have each other. So, stay safe, stay healthy and take care of one another. It's going to take everyone to make this the loudest building in the NHL once more.  

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