Stars coach Rick Bowness out Tuesday vs. Chicago due to COVID-19 protocols

Dallas Stars head coach Rick Bowness was pulled before the third period of Sunday’s loss at the Carolina Hurricanes due to the NHL’s COVID-19 protocols. Per Tracey Myers of the league’s website, the 66-year-old, who is quarantining in North Carolina, tested negative for the coronavirus but remains on the protocols list and will miss Tuesday’s matchup at the Chicago Blackhawks.

Bowness underwent another test on Tuesday and could be cleared to rejoin the Stars on Wednesday if he returns a negative result. Assistant John Stevens replaced Bowness on Sunday and will serve as interim coach against the Blackhawks. 

“I think we all presumed that he was going to be a false positive,” Stevens said of Bowness’ situation. “We Zoomed him in for the meeting today. He’s doing great, feels great. I think he feels bad about not being with the team right now. If you know Rick, that bothers him a lot.”

Goaltender Anton Khudobin was cleared from the COVID-19 protocols list after he returned two negative test results following a positive test on Saturday. He is expected to start Tuesday for Dallas. 

The Stars are sixth in the NHL Central standings with 36 points, five points behind the fourth-place Nashville Predators. Only the top four teams from each division will earn playoff berths. 

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