The San Diego Legion will play out of Las Vegas for the 2021 MLR (Major League Rugby) season. This is because of the rising number of COVID-19 cases in Southern California.
Las Vegas; new temporary home of San Diego Legion
A message from the San Diego Legion…
Thank you to all San Diego Legion fans for your support and patience during this challenging time. You all are critical to our continued, long-term success. We will announce further details on our 2021 season as soon as possible. 🏉❤ pic.twitter.com/6twqa5pZzc
— San Diego Legion (@SDLegion) January 25, 2021
Las Vegas will be the new home for the San Diego Legion this year. Keep in mind that this is a temporary relocation. The 2019 MLR finalists will not play at Torero Stadium in San Diego this year. This marks the first time an MLR franchise had to relocate its team to a neutral venue during the COVID-19 crisis. On January 25, San Diego County was reporting 15,408 cases according to Mike Stucka of USA Today Network.
However, it is assumed that the Toronto Arrows will have to relocate their home venue. This is because Canadian teams in predominately U.S. based leagues were forced to play in the U.S. This can even be seen right now as the Toronto Raptors play their home games at Tampa, Florida.
Overview of temporarily move to Las Vegas
Just approximately a week after the Dallas Jackals withdrew from the 2021 MLR season, the Legion has decided to move their venue to Vegas temporarily. However, in both cases, COVID-19 played a big role in both those decisions being made.
It is unfortunate but it is the reality the Legion and likely the Arrows will be faced with this year. Both Legion and most likely Arrows fans will need to keep in mind that this might result in a drop in performance. The players and staff are away from their families in their home markets for the season. This has been shown to be proven true last year with Toronto FC.
Alejandro Pozuelo on what he learned this season: “I learned that I miss my kids.” 💔
— Eric Giacometti (@Eric_Giacometti) November 27, 2020
The quote above shows Major League Rugby fans why they should appreciate the sacrifices players and staff from the Legion; and most likely the Toronto Arrows, will all be making in the 2021 MLR season.
For MLR, this news is not bad or good for the league. It should not change their schedule too much as the Legion are still committed to playing this year. However, it is important to note that the LA Giltinis also plays in Southern California. Major League Rugby should be if not already contacting Giltinis on whether they will play at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum this year (or not)?
Apart from that, the other 12 sides are all busily in preseason. Signings have been made in the New Year, with a few more set to complete squads ahead of the March timeline for a full season start.
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