By Joe Pantorno
Governor Andrew Cuomo has begun laying the groundwork to re-open New York as studies suggest the coronavirus outbreak is beginning to take a downward turn in the area.
Amongst the group of 100 advisors are prominent New York sports owners in Knicks and Rangers CEO James Dolan, Mets COO Jeff Wilpon, Islanders co-owner Jon Ledecky, Yankees president Randy Levine, and Sabres and Bills owner Kim Pegula.
New York has been effectively shut down since March as the state — fueled by the crowded New York City — catapulted to the status of a hot spot not only in the United States but in the world.
As of Tuesday afternoon, New York has the dubious label of leading the country with 295,106 positive reported cases and 22,912 deaths, per CNN.
While news remains grim of the number of New Yorkers affected by the pandemic, Sunday saw the state’s death count come in at below 400 for the first time this month.
The apparent slowdown of the virus’ spread has seen Cuomo pondering the idea of re-opening the state, particularly sports.
“If players could get paid more than staying home, and owners could get some revenue versus total shutdown… why not?” Cuomo asked. “I’d love to watch… I don’t know. If you can make the economics work without ticket sales and have television revenue. We’re in a different place. Be creative figure it out.”
Sports have been on hiatus since the second week of March after Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert first tested positive the virus on March 11, prompting the NBA to postpone its season.
The very next day, the rest of the active “Big 4” sports leagues in the United States — the NHL and MLB — stopped their operations indefinitely.
The NFL still managed to hold its annual draft from April 23-25 with commissioner Roger Goodell hosting the festivities from his basement in Bronxville, NY.
This story first appeared on amNY.com