The sports world has been thrown into a loop this year because of the coronavirus outbreak across the globe. Back in early wintertime, there were signs of the epidemic spreading to a handful of countries around the world. Since then, the numbers have skyrocketed all over as expected.
In the United States of America, the sports world had to shut down because of the pandemic. Initially, it seemed as if sports would continue, but as televised-only events. However, it was too late to make that decision for the NBA after a player tested positive for the coronavirus a few weeks back. Immediately, the NBA went on suspension.
Not too long after that, all other sports leagues followed up. After all sports leagues set suspensions in place, the focus shifted toward the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. With the games set for this summer, many were unaware as to whether the show would go on or not. Despite the event being months away from now, it seemed like there would be a good chance the games would be postponed — or even worse — canceled this year.
Well, the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo are canceled. Last week, an International Olympic Committee member announced the games wouldn’t go on this summer, and the following day, Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, confirmed that report. Just because it won’t happen this summer, however, doesn’t mean the Tokyo Olympics are dead and gone.
Next year the show will go on. As of March 30th, the IOC, IPC, the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, and the Government of Japan have agreed to the new dates for the 2021 Olympics, which will remain in Tokyo, Japan.
“In a call on Tuesday 24 March 2020, based on information provided by the WHO at the time, IOC President Thomas Bach and Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō concluded that the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 would be held in their complete form and not later than summer 2021.”
“The Prime Minister reiterated that the government of Japan stands ready to fulfill its responsibility for hosting these successful Games. At the same time, IOC President Thomas Bach stressed the full commitment of the IOC to successful Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.”
On Monday morning, the new Olympic dates have been announced. The games will start on July 23rd, 2021 and will be set to conclude on August 8th, 2021. The Paralympic Games dates have also been rescheduled and will begin August 24th, 2021 and will conclude on September 5th, 2021.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @JGrasso_