Premier Mifted At Mooseheads Play To Deflect Pandemic Restrictions

Written By Robyn McNeil on December 15, 2021

Nova Scotia’s Premier, Tim Houston, is unimpressed with the Halifax Mooseheads move to thwart heightened restrictions by rescheduling an upcoming game.

After being informed of the team’s actions, the premier’s office issued a statement on his behalf.

“The new restrictions regarding gathering limits come into effect on Friday at 9 a.m. The time between the announcement and the implementation was to give businesses, organizations and individuals time to prepare,” said the statement.

“The purpose of the advance notice was not to give organizations an opportunity to reschedule events and get in front of the changes.”

The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League team announced the plan on Tuesday afternoon via news release. It said Friday’s scheduled game against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan would go down Thursday instead. The shift, it noted, was “due to recent restrictions announced by the Nova Scotia government.”

And the attempt to manipulate a loophole to circumvent the return to reduced gathering limits has annoyed more than just the premier.

What the ?&!%

One Halifax-based Twitter user posted a copy of a message sent to season tickets holders about the scheduling change. The text accompanying made his distaste for the action hard to miss. He followed up with a tweet asking the team for an explanation. 

The team has not responded as of the time of publication.

Tweet by @HalifaxBeard admonishing the Halifax Mooseheads for rescheduling their upcoming game to avoid increased Covid-19 restrictions

But while plenty on the social network seems to agree the Mooseheads are in the wrong, not everyone is on board with that take.

Some echoed the OG poster’s feeling, going as far as to say it’s the “sort of thing that makes me never want to support a team again.”

Others were more understanding or simply at the end of their Covid-ropes

“Smart really won’t take a loss for that game$ wise,” said one user.

Another agreed, saying that would have been their resolution too.

“That’s what I would’ve done. Move everything back a day, so you don’t have to refund thousands.”

Twitter responses to a tweet admonishing the Halifax Mooseheads for rescheduling their upcoming game to avoid increased Covid-19 restrictions

But none of these opinions come with the weight of the premier behind them. 

The tightening of restrictions results from a recent super-spreader gathering held by St. Francis Xavier University (St. FX). It’s no wonder many Nova Scotians are feeling a little sore. 

Once bitten

The outbreak stems from the university’s recent X-ring ceremony in Antigonish, N.S., more than a week ago.

Even the president of St. FX. has tested positive for the virus.

In a statement posted to the St. FX Facebook page Sunday, Andy Hakin wrote that three school leadership team members, including himself, have contracted the virus.

The diagnosis comes a day after Hakin apologized for the university’s role in the provincial COVID-19 outbreak. The event resulted in a spike of 240 new cases in two days.

Hakin, in his statement, said 125 students were in isolation, and 26 of those live in residence.

The rest of the students who have been “directly impacted,” he said, live off-campus.

It’s no wonder people are antsy. But it’s the opinions of the premier and Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer, Dr. Robert Strang, that matter most. 

And whether the Moosehead’s gamble will pay with one last hurrah before restrictions tighten remains to be seen.

Because Public Health is monitoring the situation closely and seems willing to throw a wrench in the Mooseheads’ best-laid plans. 

“If there is a need to change the timing, it will,” the department’s statement said.

*Scott MacIntosh, Mooseheads’ manager of media relations, did not respond to a request for comment at the time of publication. Nor did the premier’s office.


Photo by Sutterstock/Matthew Jacques
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Robyn McNeil

Robyn McNeil is a Nova Scotia-based writer and editor. She lives in Halifax in an empty nest with a mischievous cat and a penchant for good stories, strong tea, cheeseburgers, yoga, graveyards, hammocks, gardening, games, herb, and hoppy beer.

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