Blades and Raiders among 15 WHL teams suspend team activities

The Saskatoon Blades and Prince Albert Raiders are among 15 WHL teams whose team activities have been suspended.

This is due to the fact that several players and staff have been added to the league’s COVID-19 protocol roster due to symptoms or testing positive for the novel coronavirus. Eight more games have been postponed… one Saturday, four Tuesday, including PA’s visit to Edmonton, and three more on Wednesday. None of these games involve the Bridge City Bunch. Two teams, Lethbridge and Swift Current, have been authorized to resume operations. The league hopes that teams currently on hiatus will be allowed to resume their activities in the coming days. WHL Commissioner Ron Robison said the league and its teams are committed to playing all 68 games. Here is the WHL press release… ..

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE / FRIDAY JANUARY 7, 2022

Calgary, Alberta. – The Western Hockey League today announced the following update on the WHL’s COVID-19 protocols, including the current suspension of team activities for 15 WHL clubs, the resumption of activities of the WHL. team for a WHL club and the postponement of eight WHL regular season games.

Currently, 15 clubs have recently taken a break from team activities due to the addition of several players and staff to the WHL’s COVID-19 protocol list due to symptoms or a test positive for COVID-19.

The Lethbridge Hurricanes and Swift Current Broncos have been cleared to resume all team activities. It is expected that many other WHL clubs currently on hiatus will be allowed to resume their team activities in the coming days.

“The WHL and our member clubs remain fully committed to playing throughout the 68-game WHL regular season and playoff schedule,” commented WHL Commissioner Ron Robison. “As we address the challenges presented by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, our priority continues to be to provide and do so a world-class development experience for WHL players, staff and officials. in a safe and healthy way. On behalf of all of the WHL, I would like to thank the WHL fans and WHL business partners everywhere for their patience as we work to reschedule games in the coming weeks.

The WHL is working in consultation with the WHL Chief Medical Officer regarding the issue regarding all clubs currently on hiatus. Currently, the following clubs have suspended all team activities, including on-ice training and off-ice training, based on WHL COVID-19 protocols:

Calgary hitmen Red deer rebels
Oil Kings of Edmonton Regina Pats
Everett Silvertips Saskatoon Blades
Kamloops Blazers Spokane Chiefs
Medicine Hat Tigers Americans from the three cities
Moose Jaw Warriors Victoria Royal
The Adventurers of Prince Albert Winnipeg ICE
Prince George Cougars

Due to the suspension of team activities of the aforementioned WHL clubs, the following eight (8) WHL regular season games have been postponed and will be rescheduled at a later date:

Saturday 8 January

Tuesday January 11

  • Calgary to Regina
  • Prince Albert in Edmonton
  • Spokane in Victoria
  • Kelowna to Prince George

wednesday 12 january

  • Calgary to Moose Jaw
  • Spokane in Victoria
  • Kelowna to Prince George

WHL clubs are responsible for monitoring COVID-19 symptoms on a daily basis among players and hockey operations personnel. When a player or hockey operations staff member exhibits symptoms, the individual performs a rapid antigen test and self-isolates. If the result of the rapid antigen test is positive, the person is sent for a PCR test to confirm the positive result and determine next steps.

If there are multiple rapid antigen test results positive for COVID-19, all team activities are immediately halted. The whole team runs a series of PCR tests and isolates until the results are received and the WHL Chief Medical Officer is made aware of the situation. The WHL, in consultation with its Chief Medical Officer, considers each situation to be unique. As such, WHL’s chief medical officer reviews all positive test results and scenarios on a case-by-case basis, taking into account a number of variables, including travel, recent timing, and potential exposures that could have happened.

The health and safety of all WHL participants is the top priority of the WHL. In order to reduce the risk of exposure and transmission of COVID-19, the WHL requires that all players on the WHL roster, hockey operations staff and other staff of League teams and offices are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with a vaccine approved by Health Canada.

Toya J. Bell