Much like everything else in the world, sport post-Covid will likely never be the same.
Fan-less games, social distancing protocols and constant testing will remain the new norm for athletes around the world for some time.
While countries such as New Zealand and Australia have seen restrictions ease in recent weeks, a raft of changes have still been implemented for varying reasons including player safety, attracting larger audiences and entertainment purposes.
Here are some of the rule changes introduced to major sporting competitions post-lockdown and whether or not they're shaping up to be for the better.
The ANZ Premiership
Premiership games are being contested over four 12 minute quarters rather than the usual 15 minutes. This has reduced games to just 48 minutes in total.
The rule change was said to be in the name of player welfare due to the competition's condensed format.
It was agreed to upon discussion with the coaches of all six franchises and Silver Ferns head coach Noeline Taurua.
Former Silver Ferns coach Yvonne Willering was quick to speak out against the change, believing it could harm upcoming Ferns campaigns.
"I look at that and I go 'I don't buy it really' because the players, they're fit enough, they still have the opportunities, they're semi-professional athletes," Willering told NZME.
Taurua, however, defended the decision believing it was the best approach for players.
"Even though it has gone to 12 minutes, it shouldn't be detrimental to the physical side of the athletes and what we want to ensure is that we have quality netball out there so if they can do that in 12 minutes I'll be happy and it shouldn't really impact any other areas of the individual game.
"At this stage, it's more of a precautionary measure to make sure that we minimise injury and take care of the welfare."
Taurua did suggest the reduced game time be reviewed following the first few weeks of competition.
Managing player load is an important factor to consider with the resumption of the tournament, however, reduced quarters shouldn't stick around.
Games should resume to 15-minute quarters by round five at the latest. Fans pay the same amount for a 60-minute game than they do to watch 48 minutes and players need to get back into the swing of international netball rules.
Australia's Super Netball
Super Netball organisers have introduced a two-point shooting zone which shooters can use in the last five minutes of every quarter.
The Super Shot zone aims to encourage players to take shots from longer range and was implemented for entertainment purposes.
The rule was trialled in the charity bushfire match earlier this year and Super Netball boss Chris Symington believes it will spice up the action.
"(It's) blending both the traditional style, but also a bit of innovation and creativity," he said.
"The sports entertainment marketplace is highly competitive. It was before COVID-19, (and) even more so now."
To say the introduction of the change went over poorly would be an understatement.
Players in the league claimed they weren't consulted, while fans slammed the idea quoting an earlier survey, which showed a strong response against the initiative.
Former Australian representative and current Melbourne Vixens player Caitlin Thwaites didn't bite her tongue when seeing the news.
"Players not being consulted over the biggest rule change netball has seen is terrible," she tweeted.
Australian Diamonds captain Caitlin Bassett, who announced her retirement at the conclusion of last year's Constellation Cup, posted a picture of NFL cheerleaders dressed as players with the caption, "The next change to make netball more 'entertaining'??"
Much like the 12-minute quarter rule change to the ANZ Premiership, introducing a two-point shooting zone could disrupt players' preparation for international netball.
Domestic competitions should stay as true to the traditional game as possible. Likewise, the Super Shot zone takes away one of the key points of difference of the FAST5 game.
Super Rugby Aotearoa
Super Rugby Aotearoa has introduced a golden point tiebreaker rule to the New Zealand-only competition.
The golden point system mirrors the NRL's, to determine a winner if the scores are tied after 80 minutes.
The first team to score – by drop goal, penalty goal, or try – during a 10-minute period of extra time wins the game.
The golden point rule was introduced to remove the prospect of fans "feeling a little empty" according to New Zealand Rugby head of professional rugby Chris Lendrum.
"We've seen the excitement it can generate in other codes and we think adds a real edge," he said.
Feedback of the golden point has overall been good, with many fans in agreeance that a tie would be far more frustrating to swallow than if their team ultimately lost in a golden point scenario.
It is highly unlikely, however, that we'll see the golden point used. In the 24-and-a-half-years of Super Rugby's history, we've witnessed just seven draws between the New Zealand sides – fewer than one in every three seasons.
We can all agree there's nothing worse than when teams tie, therefore, the gold point should definitely remain in play.
Super Rugby Aotearoa is also the first professional competition to allow players to be replaced after they're shown a red card.
Once a player is sent from the field, the affected team must wait 20 minutes before fielding a replacement. The red-carded player can't return and will still face a judicial process.
According to Lendrum, the red card change was prompted by the impact a sending-off has on rugby. The new rule solves the issue of creating an imbalance and lack of spectacle, particularly if foul play happens early in a match.
English rugby critic Chris Foy slammed the red card rule as "ludicrous," when it was revealed earlier this month.
He blasted the innovation, writing: "Seriously. Let's hope that World Rugby officials don't monitor the experiment and decide that it should be expanded globally, as it could cause chaos.''
Meanwhile, coaches including Highlanders attack coach Tony Brown and Crusaders defence coach Scott Hansen said they had no complaints with the new law.
Much like a tie, a red card can leave fans feeling rather ripped off and frustrated with a game and with an increase in red cards being shown, the new law has to stay.
Teams are still being punished for receiving a red card but at least this way, the game doesn't become a throwaway should one be conceded early on in a match.
The six-again rule has been introduced so that the attacking team is given another six tackles if the opposing team infringes at the ruck.
Before this new rule was introduced, the attacking team would be given a penalty if a player who had just been tackled wasn't immediately released by the defenders.
These penalties would mean the play would stop and give everyone a chance to regroup. Now, if there is a ruck infringement the attacking team simply gets handed another full set and continues playing.
Chairman of the Australian Rugby League Commission Peter V'landys brought in the six-again rule in an effort to speed up the game following fan feedback.
He hoped the changes would create more entertaining and free-flowing rugby league.
Players, coaches and fans have all commented on the improved speed of the games even though the fatigue factor has been evident.
It's been described as "refreshing" and hailed for creating an intensity and pace compared to a State of Origin match.
The six-again rule is still in its early days but overall presents more pros than cons.
It's likely to see NRL clubs up the ante in their fitness programs and scour the market for the fittest players, especially in their forward packs.
The NRL also introduced a one-referee model at the resumption of the tournament.
Full-time referees are instead being used as touch judges to provide more experience to sideline officiating, meaning three experienced first-grade referees are officiating every game.
According to V'landys, the decision will significantly reduce the number of stoppages in games and showcase more open unstructured play for the benefit of fans.
It will also potentially save the game millions.
The referees union had made a complaint with the Fair Work Commission over the NRL's new one-referee system, claiming the league had no right to change the officiating model under the current enterprise agreement.
But the union has since reached a deal to have a single official for the remainder of the year, and for part-time referees who are not required to retain a $500-a-week payment.
V'landys said the move back to one referee, also has the backing of fans.
The NRL pointed to a survey conducted in 2019, where fans were asked what rule innovation would they like to see to make the game more unpredictable and entertaining. Around 18,000 people responded, and V'landys said the second-highest response behind changes to scrums was reverting to one referee.
The one-referee system adds to making the game faster and more entertaining, which is why it needs to stay.
It will address speed around the ruck and the eradication of the wrestle - without affecting how the game is ultimately determined.
The NBL is trialling a new 'First to Seven' rule to help decide tied games.
The overtime period will be decided by a first-to-seven points process whereby the first team to score an additional seven points will be deemed the winner. The overtime period will not be timed.
Organisers introduced the new rule to see games not run excessively long due to broadcast constraints while trying to avoid additional workload for players was also a leading consideration.
The chance to add something that will have fans and viewers on the edge of their seat has also been cited.
The rule as been well received by players and coaches across the league with no notable complaints.
NBL general manager Justin Nelson said with so few basketball leagues being played in the world at this time, it presented the perfect chance to try something new.
"We like to think of ourselves as innovators here in New Zealand and the 'first-to-seven' concept is a bit outside the square, which we think will be engaging for fans," he said.
We've all been to a basketball game where the final few minutes of overtime seem to drag on for a lifetime and it seems like forever before a winner can be crowned. This rule, therefore, needs to stay.
Fast, entertaining and fair.