WICHITA, Kan. – Welcome to our live blog of the COVID-19 health emergency and its impacts on minor league hockey.
Here, you will find reporting from our writers in the AHL, ECHL, and SPHL, plus many other reputable sources across minor league hockey.
On the right side, you will see tweets from our SinBinNews account about the COVID-19 outbreak. For those who use The Sin Bin app, scroll to the bottom to see the tweets.
6:20 pm CT 3/12/20
The SPHL was the final hockey league to announce its suspended the season.
5:45 pm CT 3/12/20
The Federal Prospects Hockey League has announced a suspension to their season.
3:50 pm CT 3/12/20
Here’s the official ECHL announcement:
3:30 pm CT 3/12/20
The ECHL has suspended it’s season for the time being. A formal announcement will come at 5 pm ET, according to sources.
3 pm CT 3/12/20
The American Hockey League has suspended play for the time being:
2:15 pm CT 3/12/20
The Chicago Wolves became the first AHL team to announce a postponement of their home games until “at least” May 1.
In a statement, they say: “Governor Pritzker has been working with leading public health experts to determine the best courses of action to prevent the further spread of COVID-19,” said Wolves chairman Don Levin. “We believe whole-heartedly in Governor Pritzker’s recommendations and will do everything we can to keep this coronavirus from spreading.
Because this decision has been made so swiftly, the Wolves are working on procedures to determine the best way to deliver credits and refunds to people who have purchased tickets for these postponed games.”
The AHL Board of Directors is set to have a conference call shortly and the ECHL’s Board of Governors are currently in a call.
12:30 pm CT 3/12/20
The NHL has suspended its season, effective immediately.
12:10 pm CT 3/12/20
The nation’s largest junior hockey league, USHL, has announced a suspension of its season:
11:30 am CT 3/12/20
The NHL is scheduled for a conference call with the teams and Board of Governors at 1 pm ET. There is widespread, founded speculation that the NHL will suspend its season for some length of time. Thereafter, it is the AHL will have an announcement regarding its season.
The ECHL will also have some kind of an announcement later today, as well.
The SPHL is having a conference call this morning and will update later today.
9 am CT 3/12/20
Read C.C. Hawkley’s account of last night’s contest, played in an empty Huntington Center in downtown Toledo, between the Cincinnati Cyclones and Toledo Walleye: https://fieldpasshockey.com/walleye-cyclones-play-to-empty-arena-in-toledo/
3 pm CT 3/11/20
ECHL Commissioner Ryan Crelin responded to questions from The Sin Bin’s Matthew Harding about the league’s plans for games in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak:
“At this point, we are in communication with our Member Teams regarding precautionary measures, however, there are an array of options to consider and our stance is to continue to monitor on a regional basis and evaluate how respective governments are guiding their local situation to determine best next steps. We will continue to be in touch with all Member Teams as this develops.”
9 am CT 3/11/20
The Sin Bin’s C.C. Hawkley outlines the initial impacts of COVID-19, affecting the AHL’s most western team, the San Jose Barracuda:
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