BCHL sets Proposed Start Date for 2020-21 Season

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The BCHL has adopted a patient approach to workout out details on how to start the 2020-21 season amid an ever evolving COVID-19 environment in the province.

Chris Hebb said the league took a substantial and positive step by agreeing not to rush the process.

"We've got board approval for a push back to December 1," said Hebb who told EZ Rock News Friday it was the responsible thing to do.

"That aligns where the NHL is at and many of the American NCAA leagues are thinking along the same lines."

Hebb acknowledged the B-C Health Ministry is facing a massive task of setting protocols and guidelines for the entire province while battling the virus and is pleased officials are now in a position to discuss their situation.

The Commissioner said talks have reached the substantive stage and pointed out this is a scenario none of the parties involved planned for.

"There is no playbook for this," said Hebb who added talks will move forward to agree on the appropriate measures, including separate arena protocol agreements for each team.

"We know now our planning needs to meet the approval of the provincial health office and that's the same for the arenas, so I think everyone is working along the same lines and buying ourselves some time," said the BCHL's leader and Hebb believes their approach was in line with one of the league's hallmarks.

"One of our pillars is player safety and we believe that this is safest way for us to go forward," said Hebb. 

The league is still hoping the provincial government also approves their request for funding.

Hebb said pushing back the start date to December 1 will add to combined losses of about $3-million as teams were denied playoff revenue and money from spring camps after play was halted on March 12.