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Vancouver Canucks have 21 players, four coaches in COVID-19 protocol

Vancouver head coach Travis Green and the Canucks haven't played since March 24 due to the team's COVID-19 outbreak. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI
Vancouver head coach Travis Green and the Canucks haven't played since March 24 due to the team's COVID-19 outbreak. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

April 7 (UPI) -- The Vancouver Canucks announced Wednesday that at least 25 individuals have tested positive for COVID-19 since last month.

The team said 21 players, including three from the taxi squad, and four staff members have tested positive, and one other player is considered a close contact.

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"The health and safety of players, staff, families and the greater community remains the utmost priority," the team said in a statement. "The Canucks are grateful for the continued support of local public health officials, the NHL and NHLPA and encourage everyone to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by following health orders.

"COVID-19 infections are rising in [British Columbia]. This is a stark reminder of how quickly the virus can spread and its serious impact, even among healthy, young athletes."

The massive outbreak, which has impacted nearly all of the team's players, is one of the largest that a professional sports team has endured during the coronavirus pandemic. All players and staff remain in quarantine, and 19 of the 22 players on the Canucks' active roster were listed on the league's COVID-19 protocol list Wednesday.

The Canucks' outbreak first made news March 31, when the team postponed a game against the Calgary Flames after three positive COVID-19 tests in two days. The next day, the NHL postponed three more of the Canucks' games.

The team confirmed the source infection is a variant, but further testing is required to identify the type.

Vancouver hasn't played since March 24, when it lost 5-1 to the Winnipeg Jets.

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