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614 Sports: Arnold promised he’d be back and he is

jimmy lentz

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Arnold Is Back (It’s Not Just a Catchphrase)

The 30th Arnold Sports Festival will yet again take over downtown Columbus. Competitive weightlifting showcases, as well as various apparel and nutritional product offerings will ensure that patrons will have plenty to choose from and enjoy in this all-things-fitness event renowned all over the world. Each year, athletes from across the globe venture to Columbus to experience this famed fitness expo, once again giving real-time confirmation to Arnold himself that Columbus is a second home for the famed action star, weightlifting icon, and former governor of California (go ahead, pronounce it the fun way). The coolest undercover kindergarten teacher ever is currently starring in local Ricart car commercials promoting his annual event happening later this week, solidifying his local street cred in central Ohio.

The Arnold Sports Festival will be March 1-4 at the Columbus Convention Center. Please check http://www.arnoldsportsfestival.com/the-arnold/fitnessexpo for expo details.

Blue Jackets Capitalize on Being a Wild Card

Admittedly an awkward reaction for a sport played on ice, but the Columbus Blue Jackets (69 points) have been hot and cold in recent weeks. Earlier this month, the CBJ lost to Metro Division foe Washington Capitals twice within just a few days in a critical home-and-away series. Last night, the same Blue Jackets surely shocked their home fans in demolishing the same Capitals 5-1 at Nationwide Arena with a roaring four-goal first period and a grand total of five different scorers (Atkinson, Jones, Letestu, Milano, Panarin). What CBJ team will show up next? That bit of mystery is partly what’s making this Columbus squad fun to watch as they try to maintain that final Wild Card position in the Eastern Conference standings.

The Columbus Blue Jackets will fly across the country to face the Los Angeles Kings (73 points) on Thursday night at the STAPLES Center at 10:30 p.m. ET on Fox Sports Ohio.

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Columbus is a frontrunner to host return of the NHL in proposed plan

Mike Thomas

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With some teams telling players to report for workouts on May 15, the future of the current NHL season is still anything but certain. For now, it seems hockey commissioner Gary Bettman is eyeing a a plan to finish out regular season play by centralizing games at four locations. According to a report from the New York Post, Columbus and the facilities at Nationwide Arena are among the frontrunners being considered to host one of these proposed "quadrants," should the NHL resume play this summer.

Hockey blog thehockeywriters.com offers a deep-dive into the many factors that have put Columbus on the short list of candidates for this modified NHL season, including the abundance of hotels in the area of Nationwide Arena, the more-than-adequate facilities of the arena itself, and the encouragingly low number of Covid cases in Franklin County.

While it's still way, way too early to say whether or not this plan will move forward, it's encouraging nonetheless to see Columbus recognized as a frontrunner for the return of national televised sports. Just don't count on sitting in the stands with 80k of your fellow fans anytime soon.

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Sports

Memorial Tourney gets mid-summer date but will fans be allowed?

614Now

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It may be a little early to break out the polo shirt and comfy walking shoes, but the good news is that one the city's most visible sporting events will be held this year after all. The big question remains: will Gov. DeWine allow fans to attend?

Thursday, the PGA Tour announced The Memorial Tournament will play the week of July 13-19 at Muirfield Village Golf Club and feature an increased field from 120 to 144 players. The invitational’s one-time expanded field size allowance will provide additional playing opportunities for touring professionals in light of the TOUR’s reduced schedule.

“This is an unprecedented time in our world, as well as the world of sports,” said Founder and Host Jack Nicklaus. “I can’t emphasize enough the message related to doing your part by social distancing and helping our nation and world by slowing this pandemic. But while we all need to come together and be strong, we also need to be understanding and flexible."

Recognizing Governor DeWine’s Ohio Stay at Home order and public gatherings ban guidelines currently in place, the Memorial will proceed with an understanding that its operation may require alterations. The Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide will continue to offer patron badges, enhanced with a special offer that includes honoring original presale badge rates – starting at $185 for a weekly patron badge – and a complimentary $20 merchandise card (limit one per order, per household) redeemable at all on-site golf shops during Tournament week.

The Tournament plans to monitor the State of Ohio COVID-19 regulations and will employ changes relative to patron access if needed. If it is determined that the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide will be staged without patrons, a full refund policy will be implemented.

“This has been a couple months we would soon like to forget, but hopefully we can make this a summer to remember," added Nicklaus.

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Goodbye Yellow and Black? Columbus Crew could change name

614now Staff

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With the announcement of the new downtown stadium in the post-"Save the Crew" era, the future of Columbus Crew SC seemed secure.

Now, a report from The Dispatch is once against casting doubt on the club's continued existence—at least in its current form. According to "sources close to the Crew’s front office," management is giving serious thought to changing the team name, colors, and logo by the time the new stadium opens in the summer of 2021.

For commentary on the situation, including a statement from a team spokesperson, read the full rundown at The Dispatch.

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