Commissioner Rob Mazzuca and the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League have confirmed a three-week pause to its 2021-2022 regular season schedule effective today.
The move comes as a result of the recent announcement by the Government of Ontario, which has put in place a number of COVID-19-related restrictions within the province relative to the rapid spread of the Omicron variant.
“Despite the limitations being put in place by the province, the NOJHL remains wholly committed to the completion of our regular season, playoffs, and league championship series as well as sending our representative to compete in the Dudley-Hewitt Cup Central Canadian Jr. A event,” said Mazzuca.
“The players, team staffs, game officials and everyone associated with the NOJHL have done a tremendous job following the guidelines put in place, at every level, with hundreds, upon hundreds, of negative COVID-tests coming back as a result, as we remained dutiful of our responsibilities in dealing with the on-going pandemic,” added Mazzuca, who also serves as the Canadian Jr. Hockey League’s chairman of the board.
“Our board of governors, the executive, and our 12 member clubs remain steadfast on planning a number of various scenarios to extend our season and begin a resumption of play, when the go ahead is given and it is safe for us to do so,” Mazzuca stated.
“We at the league also continue to work closely with each of the local, regional and provincial health units on a proper course of action, so that we our ready on our end, to begin our earliest return to play, when that arises,” the veteran commissioner continued.
The commissioner also commended league participants and provided to them that the NOJHL looks to do anything in its control to see a safe completion of its campaign.
“We can’t thank the players in our league enough for their dedication, commitment and patience as we work our way through this. They’ve bought in one hundred per cent and fully realize the seriousness of the situation. We owe it to them, as well as our loyal fans, to do our part to get them back on the ice as soon as it is safe to do so, once a go ahead has been given,” Mazzuca praised.
The NOJHL will also continue work alongside its fellow provincial CJHL partners in the Ontario Jr. Hockey League, Superior International Jr. Hockey League and the Central Canada Hockey League throughout the process, said Mazzuca.