NEW YORK Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared Sunday that professional sports teams in his state can return to their training facilities after a pause of more than two months due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Starting today, all the New York professional sports leagues will be able to begin training camps,” Cuomo said during a news conference at Jones Beach on Long Island.
“I believe that sports that can come back without having people in the stadium, without having people in the arena — do it! Do it!”
The coronavirus hit New York the hardest of all states, with more than 360,000 cases and nearly 29,000 deaths reported, but deaths and new infections have been trending downward.
New York serves as the home to several professional sports teams, with two in the NBA (Knicks, Nets), one in the WNBA (Liberty), three in the NHL (Rangers, Islanders, Sabres), two in Major League Baseball (Yankees, Mets) and two in Major League Soccer (Red Bulls, NYCFC). The NFL’s Buffalo Bills also reside in the Empire State, while the New York Giants and Jets technically are headquartered in New Jersey.
MLB, NBA and NHL are all working on plans to start or resume their respective seasons.
“Work out the economics, if you can. We want you up. We want people to be able to watch sports,” Cuomo said. “To the extent people are still staying home, it gives people something to do. It’s a return to normalcy. So we are working and encouraging all sports teams to start their training camps as soon as possible. And we’ll work with them to make sure that can happen.”