PRINCETON, N.J. – It has been 145 days since the ECHL has played a game. It will be at least 121 more days before another faceoff is taken.
Today, the ECHL joined its counterparts in the American Hockey League (AHL) and Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) by pushing the start of the 2020-21 season back until at least December. This lines up with the National Hockey League, which is targeting to open their season on December 1, the AHL is also targeting December 4, and the SPHL is targeting a date in “mid to late December” to open.
“We are eager to return to hockey, but at this time we believe this decision is prudent for the safety of our Players, Employees and Fans,” said ECHL Commissioner, Ryan Crelin. “The ECHL and our Board of Governors are focused on the 2020-21 Season and remain optimistic for the safe reopening of our venues across the continent. We appreciate our partners and fans continued support and patience, as we work together with our venues, local health officials and the members of the PHPA’s Executive Committee towards the safe return of ECHL hockey.”
The goal is still to have a full 72-game season, but how and what that looks like will be dictated by the health situation in each market.
This is a developing story and will be updated.