It appears the Canadian Hockey League is serious about the development of Canadian goaltenders.
The CHL will only allow teams to select goalies in the first round (60 teams) of the upcoming import draft and plan to ban goalies in the import draft starting as soon as next season, Sportsnet’s Daren Millard reported Monday night.
Major move by @CHLHockey Import goalies only eligible in 1st round of next months draft. Goalies will be excluded from the 14 import draft.
Other non-Canadian goalies in the league will be able to play out the rest of their junior eligibility.
CHL teams will still be able to use two roster spots on imports but those players will not allowed to be goaltenders.
Cox reported last month that CHL commissioner David Branch met with Hockey Canada to discuss the possibility of banning European goalies.
“The CHL has had discussions in a broader sense with Hockey Canada,” Branch told the Toronto Star. “One of the ideas put forward was eliminating goalies from the annual import draft to allow more focus on North American goalies.
I understand critics, but we have to find spots for our own kids and those are limited. Think about how many more games n/a goalies get.
The top three Vezina Trophy finalists did not include any Canadians and a Canadian goalie has not been the first netminder selected in the NHL Draft since 2008 when the Nashville Predators chose Chet Pickard No. 18 overall.
In last year’s NHL Draft, only 11 of the 24 goalies selected hailed from Canada.