QMJHL becomes first CHL league to cancel remainder of regular season

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The QMJHL is the first major junior league to officially cancel the remainder of its regular season due to the COVID-19 virus, the league announced on Tuesday.

Alexie Lafreniere|Photo by Vincent Ethier/CHL

The QMJHL is the first Canadian major junior league to officially cancel the remainder of its regular season due to the COVID-19 virus. The league announced its decision in a statement Tuesday.

The league first suspended its season last week following the NHL’s decision to press pause on its on-ice play. The QMJHL regular season was set to conclude on March 21, with the majority of teams having fewer than six games remaining in the campaign. The final standings, the league said, will be based on points percentage.

Through 63 games, the Sherbrooke Phoenix have been dominant from start to finish with a 51-8-3-1 record, including a 13-0-0-0 run prior to the cancellation. Sherbrooke (106) and the Moncton Wildcats (101) were the only two teams to crack the 100-point barrier, with Chicoutimi Saguenéens not far behind with 96. Currently, 15 teams had clinched playoff spots. The Gatineau Olympiques (49 points) are the highest-placed team of the remaining three clubs to not secure a spot prior to the announcement. When, or if, the playoffs begin, however, the Olympiques will make the post-season based on points percentage.

There is no word as to the status of the playoffs or the Memorial Cup, which is set to take place in Kelowna in May. There is no official word on the QMJHL draft, but a previous version of the league’s press release said it would be based on the reverse order of the final standings. The Acadie-Bathurst Titan finished last with just 36 points.

Rimouski’s Alexis Lafreniere, the projected No.1 draft pick for the 2020 NHL draft, led the QMJHL with 112 points in 52 games and was the only player to reach the 100-point plateau this season. Chicoutimi’s Alexis Shank led all goalies with 36 wins.

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