CHL Cancels OHL Playoffs and Memorial Cup.
Junior hockey fans were hopeful that a 2019-20 OHL Playoffs and Memorial Cup would still occur after the cancellation of the remaining games in the regular season due to the Covid-19 situation.
But with many factors in play, including and most importantly the health and safety of fans, players, and staff, the parent CHL announced on Monday it would cancel the OHL playoffs. Ultimately the national championship Memorial Cup in Kelowna BC was also forced to be cancelled.
While this decision will come with many ramifications that we still haven’t seen yet, it was made with the best interest of all. Kingston Frontenacs rookie defenseman Braden Hache, like many players, took to Twitter on Monday with positive messages.
As unfortunate as this is, we all know deep down this is the right call to make. The health and well being of everyone is more important right now. Stay safe. https://t.co/r1fyyHXC9r
— Braden Haché (@BradenHache) March 23, 2020
With this announcement there is, in the very least, closure and OHL fans, players, and management staff around the league can begin to focus on the off-season and 2020-21 OHL regular season. It was a great 2019-20 regular season with many storylines and we here at the OHLNetwork.ca look forward to revisiting some memorable moments.
While we may not have an OHL playoffs and ultimate champion in the CHL this season, we saw many teams and players make significant strides during 2019-20. One can’t help but be excited for the future of OHL hockey.
The Ottawa 67’s finished the season atop the standings and are considered the favorites to have represented the OHL in the Memorial Cup. The team featured leading scorer Marco Rossi and four 67’s players were atop the plus/minus chart.
Ottawa would have had a run for its money with Western Conference squads like London Knights, Saginaw Spirit and Kitchener Rangers. The Flint Firebirds had a excellent turnaround season rising from a Conference 10-spot in the 2018-19 campaign to an 82-point finish this season. The Peterborough Petes, Oshawa Generals, and Sudbury Wolves all looked prepared to potentially take out the number one seed 67’s from the East.
With the always “anything can happen in the post-season” cliché applicable, it would have been a great opportunity for the young up-start Kingston Frontenacs to show themselves on a large stage. Rookie Shane Wright finished his exceptional-status year arguably exceeding expectations for the OHL’s next superstar. Last springs number-one pick at the OHL Priority Selection bettered Connor Mcdavid’s point totals in Erie finishing just five goals shy of John Tavares record for goals by a underage player.
Brandt Clarke of the Barrie Colts, Brett Brochu of the London Knights, Windsor Spitfire Reuben Rafkin, and Peterborough Petes Mason McTavish all had great rookie years. The careers of some overage players unfortunately came to a premature end as well with the recent announcements of the cancelations.
Ottawa’s Jack Quinn and Peterborough’s Nick Robertson both eclipsed the 50-goal mark while Washington Capitals prospect Connor McMichael enjoyed a great season. The World Junior champion had six hattricks finishing second in goals-per-game with a very impressive .900 average.
Guelph Storm goaltender Nico Daws joins Kitchener Rangers Jacob Ingham and London’s Brochu as potential goalies-of-the year all having impressive seasons. Petes Hunter Jones and Ottawa’s Cedrick Andree also could be considered after great years.
The OHLNetwork will be reviewing the season and looking more in detail to some of these storylines and will look back on the a very exciting season in the OHL.
With some more time to talk hockey, we are happy to announce the OHL Unfiltered Podcast will return on March 31 to bringing you up-to-the-date news from our knowledgeable hosts and guests.
Stay tuned for more information on twitter @Network_OHL and at OHLNetwork.ca.