LA Kings among the four teams interested in outdoor games

(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /

According to reports, the LA Kings are willing to play games outdoors if it means fans can attend.

With the NHL and NHLPA nowhere close on a timeline for the 2021 season, reports have emerged that nearly a handful of teams are willing to play some of their games outdoors if it means getting fans through the gates. The LA Kings are one of those teams, according to TSN.

"“The LA Kings have the MLS stadium in California later in the season if health authorities allow it, but would like to play a whole bunch of games, and there’s other teams as well that have told the league we’d like to play outdoor games. Why? Because with the fans physically distanced, obviously you can get some gate revenue.” – Pierre LeBrun"

The Bruins have reportedly been open to playing some of their games at Fenway Park until the Red Sox need it in early April. And the Penguins have expressed interest in playing the first month outdoors in hopes that a vaccine will become available to the public within that timeframe.

Of course, we’d like nothing more than the LA Kings to be playing at the Staples Center every evening. But a major challenge will be how to safely social distance fans.

Some NFL teams have done a great job of staggering fans while closing concessions. As long as fans are masked, a similar setup could be implemented for the NHL.

The league has already said that a full season, or as full as the 2021 season will be, in a bubble format is impossible. They are already looking at an all-Canadian division for next year due to the complications of the border crossing from the U.S. into Canada.

Either way, it’s not a bad idea to think outside the box. Both parties need to get something done and something done soon. January 1 is nearly out of the question at this point, but a mid-January start might still be feasible.

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The last time the LA Kings played outdoors was in Colorado Springs for the Stadium Series matchup with the Avalanche last season. Tyler Toffoli recorded a hat trick in LA’s win.