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Manitoba junior hockey on ‘pause’ due to COVID-19

A hockey stick.
A hockey stick. Jonathan Daniel/Staff / Getty Images Sport

The National Hockey League is following the lead of the NBA in suspending regular season play indefinitely because of the spread of COVID-19 caused by novel coronavirus.  Junior and minor hockey leagues are reacting in a similar fashion.

The three commissioners of the leagues that make up the Canadian Hockey League met on Thursday and decided to suspend all games in Quebec, Ontario, and the Western Hockey league until further notice.

The Winnipeg Ice were scheduled to host Saskatoon on Friday Night and Regina on Saturday at the U of M’s Wayne Fleming Arena.

READ MORE: Winnipeg Ice succeeding in first season since relocation, on way to playoffs

The Manitoba Junior Hockey League’s Turnbull Cup Playoffs, which began last Friday, have been cancelled until further notice. The Steinbach Pistons completed a series sweep of the Winnipeg Blues to lead the charge into the semifinals.  Portage and Swan Valley held 2-1 leads over Dauphin and Waywayseecappo in the two remaining matchups, which had been scheduled to resume Friday Night.

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NHL suspends its season amid coronavirus pandemic
NHL suspends its season amid coronavirus pandemic

READ MORE: Steinbach Pistons crowned ANAVET Cup champions

The Manitoba Major Junior Hockey League’s McKenzie Cup Playoffs are on hold until further notice. The first post season game had been scheduled for Thursday night with the St. Vital Victorias hosting the Fort Garry/Fort Rouge Twins.

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The Manitoba U18 championship final was scheduled to start Thursday of next week, but that will not be played after Hockey Canada announced late Thursday Afternoon that all of that governing body’s sanctioned events have been cancelled. The Winnipeg Wild and Pembina Valley Hawks were leading the Eastman Selects and Southwest Cougars 2-0 in the best of 5 semifinals when the decision was made to suspend play.

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