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Money Coronavirus shuts down custom hockey stick factory that serves NHL players

11:35  12 february  2020
11:35  12 february  2020 Source:   cbc.ca

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Bauer Hockey makes its custom hockey sticks at a factory in central China, the part of the world that's the epicentre of the outbreak. In an attempt to halt the spread of the disease, Chinese officials extended the Lunar New Year Holiday to shut businesses in the region that includes the Bauer facility

Bauer Hockey makes its custom hockey sticks at a factory in central China, the part of the world that's the epicentre of the outbreak. In an attempt to halt the spread of the disease, Chinese officials extended the Lunar New Year Holiday to shut businesses in the region that includes the Bauer facility.

(Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)© 2020 NHLI (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

The quarantine applied to a section of central China in response to the coronavirus is having a major impact on something seemingly a world away: hockey sticks in the NHL.

Bauer Hockey makes its custom hockey sticks at a factory in central China, the part of the world that's the epicentre of the outbreak.

In an attempt to halt the spread of the disease, Chinese officials extended the Lunar New Year Holiday to shut businesses in the region that includes the Bauer facility in Tongxiang City in Zhejiang province. Costing hundreds of dollars apiece, such sticks are typically catered toward pros and other high end players — not amateurs.

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Around 75% of sticks used on the ice by NHL players come from Chinese factories , with Bauer, CCM and True Hockey all getting Dan Mecrones, who overlooks pro league and player endorsements at Warrior, an equipment company that does not ship out of China, told the Globe that players who

NHL players are facing a potential shortage of custom -made hockey sticks as the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in China halts production for two of the league ’s Work at Chinese factories has ground to a halt in recent weeks as authorities in Beijing attempt to slow the spread of coronavirus .

Bauer's factory has been shut since the end of January, and the closing has been extended twice. It's currently on track to reopen next Monday, but in the interim the company can't make any new ones.

Only custom sticks are affected, Bauer Hockey chief executive Ed Kinnaly told CBC News in an emailed statement. "For amateur hockey players around the world, we do not anticipate any impact. Our … retail partners have inventory for this season, and the majority of shipping for next season will occur this summer."

Bauer and another company, CCM, supply sticks for about three quarters of NHLers, according to the Boston Globe, which first reported the story. CCM also manufactures its custom sticks out of a Chinese factory. The company didn't reply to a request for comment from CBC.

There's no indication that any teams or players are running out yet, and the company notes they do have some inventory in North America that could help bridge any gap.

"We have backup stock in the U.S. and Canada to meet these needs, and we are working closely with equipment managers to understand their inventory levels and ensure players have what they need throughout this situation," Kinnaly said.

Still, if the shutdown extends beyond next week, supplies could get tight.

Other hockey equipment manufacturers, including Warrior, Sherwood and goalie equipment maker Vaughn, did not reply to requests for comment on the impact of the coronavirus on their supply chains.

Amid virus outbreak, concerns about a hockey stick shortage .
Amid virus outbreak, concerns about a hockey stick shortageThe coronavirus outbreak that began in China is affecting the production of hockey sticks used by the world's top players, raising concerns about a potential shortage. Two major manufacturers, Bauer and CCM, have factories in China that have closed.

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