Local fans react to sports events being postponed due to coronavirus fears

Hampden County

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Many sports fans around the world are unhappy with the decision to pause their teams’ seasons.

Local fans told 22News they were trying to come to terms with the NBA and NHL’s decisions, but after hearing about changes at the Basketball Hall of Fame and for the Thunderbirds they aren’t sure how to feel. The Basketball Hall of Fame and the MassMutual Center in Springfield are visited by the areas sports fans daily but that’s about to change.

Amid coronavirus concerns, Basketball Hall of Fame President and CEO John Doleva made the decision to cancel the upcoming Western Mass. All-Star Games that were scheduled for March 19. Hours later, the American Hockey League suspended their current season which means the Springfield Thunderbirds will not be taking the ice until further notice.

“I think it’s a real stress factor. Especially for people that watch basketball, football, I’m a sports fan. And it just leaves us empty,” said Anthony Earl Owens of Springfield.

Both the Basketball Hall of Fame and AHL say their decision was made to protect the health and safety players, fans and staff. One fan told 22News he’s on board with that.

“I think this going to be part of the new norm, right when you have this kind of activity you really have to keep people safe,” Chris Scyocurka said.

There was a Thunderbirds game scheduled to take place Thursday night at the MassMutual Center. It’s still unclear how the situation will be handled for those who purchased tickets for Thursday’s game or other upcoming games.

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