USHL cancels remainder of 2019-20 season due to COVID-19 outbreak

Trevor Janicke of Team USA skates with the puck as Jared Kucharek of the Omaha Lancers defends. (Justin Berl/Getty Images)

The United States Hockey League has announced it is joining the course adopted by many professional leagues around the world, cancelling the rest of its 2019-20 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The USHL initially postponed its season last Thursday before ultimately electing to cancel the remainder of the campaign altogether.

“This decision was not an easy one to make, but was a necessity in order to keep our athletes, staffs and fans in all 16 of our communities safe amid this international health risk,” USHL President and Commissioner Tom Garrity said in a release.

“While we believe our product is the best junior hockey that fans can view, we also understand the health of our athletes, employees, fans and communities is more important during this time.”

The Chicago Steel ranked first in the league prior to its postponement and eventual cancellation, sitting as the only club to have clinched a playoff spot so far. The team also housed the top three scorers in the league this season.

With the USHL’s season cancelled, the U.S. National Team Development Program – which saw seven of its players drafted among the top 15 of the 2019 NHL Draft – sees its 2019-20 campaign come to an end as well.

The league will announce its 2019-20 season awards “in the coming weeks,” according to the release.

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