Team president Will Irvine says finding out when return to play could even happen is the first question the Dawson Creek Senior Canucks need answered.
"We are proceeding forward until we hear that we can't," said Canucks President Will Irvine.
"We want to play hockey, but a lot of decisions still need to be made."
As of right now, with no return-to-play guideline and plan set forth by BC Hockey, only practices are sanctioned. viaSport B.C. currently not allowing teams to travel between provinces and compete in Alberta, which would prevent the Canucks from being able to play most other NPHL teams.
Questions that have yet to be answered by anyone officially:
Will municipalities even open arenas? Will leagues mandate a close on their own? If arenas are open, will dressing rooms be in use? Insiders say players may have to arrive dressed. If dressing rooms are allowed, how many people at a time will be able to use them? How will a players bench work? What about a penalty box with three players in it at one time? How many people will be allowed in the building at a time?
All teams in the league require both fan-generated revenue and sponsorship to operate. While Irvine said the team is in good shape financially thanks to a couple deep playoff runs and probably could run a season with no fans, he's not sure there would be a point in doing that.
"The whole point of playing in the NPHL is playing for the community. If you can't provide a product on the ice you might as well play rec hockey," Irvine added.
The Canucks, like every team without a television contract, will also need increased sponsorship money this season during a down economy when there is less money to go around. Despite the questions and uncertainty, the willingness to play and compete is there. The players have committed to return, as has the coaching staff and GM.
"Senior hockey is pretty good hockey. It's action packed, and great for fans to watch. We want to play for another Coy Cup, and we want to play for our fans," Irvine said. "It will be an interesting year."