Blue Jackets Do Not Invite Zac Rinaldo To Training Camp Because Of Vaccination Status

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Blue Jackets Do Not Invite Zac Rinaldo To Training Camp Because Of Vaccination Status

Chicago Blackhawks

The NHL is not taking COVID-19 and vaccination status lightly. Recently, NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said that the league expects nearly all coaches and players to be vaccinated, with about “10-15” players expected to be unvaccinated. With strict restrictions imposed on teams this season for unvaccinated players, it’s no wonder so many have chosen to be vaccinated, other than, you know, not getting gravely ill.

One team taking their players and coaches’ vaccination decisions extremely seriously are the Columbus Blue Jackets. On Tuesday, they released their 67-player roster of training camp invitees. Unfortunately, Zac Rinaldo was left off the list, who the Blue Jackets signed a two-way contract a month ago.

The reasoning? Rinaldo would have been the only unvaccinated player at camp.

While some might say that one out of 67 not vaccinated players isn’t the biggest deal, this is the Columbus Blue Jackets we are talking about. The same team that fired a coach last week for choosing not to get the vaccine.

Also working against Rinaldo, in this case, is that not only would he be a potential problem in camp by being unvaccinated, but his off-ice decisions also don’t make his presence in the locker room any better.

Also, this is Zac Rinaldo. The Blue Jackets are trying to get better, and they probably have no time for a player like him, causing them any more headaches than he already will this season.

With NHL training camps opening across the league this week, this may not be the only time we see a player left off a training camp roster due to their vaccination status. But the league and teams are making it a strong point this season that if you could potentially cause a problem with missing practice time or missing games, and potentially causing yourself and others to lose money, you aren’t going to be around.

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Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.