The New Jersey Devils and Prudential Center released a statement today showing support for the NHL’s decision to suspend the 2019-20 season due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Similarly, they announced that all events at the Prudential Center through the end of March have been postponed. This was done “in consultation with live event partners, promoters and artists.”
“The health and well-being of our fans, players, performers, artists, staff members, partners and communities are of the utmost importance, and we remain in close communication with public health, state and local officials during this challenging period.”
The Devils and Prudential Center said that they are “committed in assisting our arena associates through this period” as staff for both organizations are considered “family and the heartbeat of the organization.”
No word was put forth on exactly what the team and arena organizations are doing for the staff of each group in this time, but Managing Partner Josh Harris did say “In this time of need, we need to band together and take care of people. Our teams, our cities and the leagues in which we operate are a family, and we are committed to looking out for one another.”
The Devils did “extend [their] sincere gratitude and appreciation to the many talented doctors, nurses, medical professionals and emergency services personnel who are working tirelessly to address this matter of public health.”
The Devils then promised further updates as soon as possible.
The message here is that one of the reasons the NHL put the season on hold was due to the health and safety of people working in the arenas more than anything and rightfully so. They are the people that are dealing with the crowds and, thus, more susceptible to catching something. The players are a little bit more removed from the crowds (although, make no mistake, they are highly at risk as well).
Hopefully everyone at Prudential Center and the Devils organization, both up front and behind the scenes, is okay and gets through this.