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The logo of the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL)
Photo credit: Alberta Junior Hockey League

Top Canadian Junior League Issues Contradictory Statement Amid Controversy over Team Jumping Ship

Published January 23, 2024 at 1:10 PM
BY TJ TUCKER
Amid controversy over word that five teams in the Alberta Junior Hockey League had been suspended after it was announced they would be joining a rival league next season, the AJHL has released an updated statement that is causing even more questions over where everything stands.

The AJHL was rocked by news late last week that five teams would be jumping ship in 2024-25, and joining the British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL). The announcement, made by the BCHL itself, was the first they had heard of it, according to the AJHL, and it moved to cancel games involving the five teams on the move.


Despite cancelling those games, and future ones involving the five teams, the AJHL released a statement Monday saying those five teams were not suspended.


"The Alberta Junior Hockey League continues to operate as a member of the Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) and has not suspended any of its 16 member teams. All games played have been league sanctioned, under the
management of AJHL game officials, and recorded in the League standings.

The following games have been canceled for the originally
scheduled dates:
- January 23: Canmore Eagles @ Okotoks Oilers
- January 24: Sherwood Park Crusaders@ Camrose Kodiaks
- January 24: Spruce Grove Saints @ Lloydminster Bobcats

The AJHL will continue to assess next steps and schedule
implications."


Cancelling the games of the teams going to the BCHL, recording games played in the official books, all while saying no teams have been suspended is just silly. The AJHL is not looking good in this situation and appears to be panicking over it. As for why those five teams are leaving, the BCHL is independent, and not sanctioned by Hockey Canada. That means the BCHL can recruit 16 and 17-year old players from other provinces, something that is not allowed in the AJHL because it's a member of Hockey Canada. The BCHL has also started attracting a great following, making it even more attractive to participating teams.
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Top Canadian Junior League Issues Contradictory Statement Amid Controversy over Team Jumping Ship

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