American Hockey League President and CEO Scott Howson has announced a revised start date for the 2020-21 AHL season, as approved by the league’s Board of Governors during its 2020 Annual Meeting. At the recommendation of the AHL’s Return to Play Task Force, the Board of Governors has approved moving the anticipated start of the 2020-21 regular season to December 4, 2020, due to the ongoing COVID-19 public health crisis.
Just a day before Logan O’Connor stepped on the ice to make his Stanley Cup Playoffs debut, we caught up with OC to ask him about his experience in the NHL Bubble.
CE.com - Logan, we'll kick it off with this… You made quite the impressive kick the other day, so much so that Kevin McGlue has been getting some calls from NFL teams about kicking positions (not really). Unfortunately, the video hid where you were kicking from. Was that a 10 yarder or are we looking at 25 plus yards there?
OC - I want to say it was 35. They definitely got the good one though. I would say I'm not consistent, they missed a couple of the ones that went wayward but I think that kick was about 35 or 40 yards.
CE.com – Well we won’t let the NFL scouts know about the consistency, we’ll just pass along the yardage.
OC – Sounds good to me
CE.com – Have you been able to get outside and do some activities while in the bubble?
OC – We’ve taken two field trips to that football field, which has been nice as they have a bunch of game setups. Spikeball, boxes of footballs, obviously soccer balls, so it's nice to do that. Honestly, it's hard to get outside the bubble. As crazy as that may sound, the rink and the hotel are attached. So, you could go days without literally going outside. We did get to have one golf trip, and that was pretty nice as well. It's good to get out, and a lot of guys are big golfers on the team, so that was nice.
CE.com – Who would you say surprised you as a really athletic guy off the ice?
OC – I wouldn’t say I was surprised by this, but Cale Makar. Seeing him throw the football some 60 yards was impressive. Like I said, it wasn’t surprising, but he looks like he could handle himself out on the field.
CE.com – So what you’re saying is John Elway should maybe reach out to Joe Sakic next time he’s having quarterback trouble?
OC – Yea, he’s got that gunslinger mentality in the pocket.
CE.com – You’ve made it into the warmups lineup a couple times in the bubble, how has your game preparation changed in the bubble?
OC – You have to be prepared at any given moment. It’s playoffs so guys are playing hard out there and anything could happen. You never want to see injuries, but you have to be prepared if that time comes.
CE.com – You’re only in your second year of professional hockey and you find yourself playing hockey in an isolated bubble and competing for the great honor of raising the Stanley Cup. How’s that been for you as a player?
OC - It's a very unique experience. I'm sure this is something we'll look back on 30 years from now and say we were sort of a part of it. Obviously, we dropped those two games, but I think we just need to continue to stick to the process. Everyone's excited, everyone's still confident in the team that the Avalanche put together for us, so we'll see going forward how we do.