Photo Credit: Garrett James Photography
With opening weekend of the season starting tomorrow, the BCHL has announced a new focus for the league moving forward: ‘Modern Hockey’.
The new tagline represents a shift in culture for the BCHL as it moves into a more modern style of play and operation at the team and league levels.
Within the ‘Modern Hockey’ brand are four pillars which the league is built on: Speed and Skill, Player Safety, Education and Community.
“The game of hockey is quickly growing and changing and we want to make sure the BCHL is at the forefront of that movement,” said BCHL Commissioner Chris Hebb. “The league is shifting from old-school to new-school and ‘Modern Hockey’ is the perfect symbol of that.”
Speed and Skill
With fighting penalties significantly declining year after year, the BCHL is already in the process of moving away from that type of hockey and instead emphasizing speed, skill and scoring.
The league also serves as a model for the professional game. This is backed up by the BCHL’s growing representation at the NHL Draft. Eight players were selected out of the BCHL in 2019, including first-rounder Alex Newhook, as well as four more players who will play in the league this year.
The BCHL will also continue to explore ways to improve player safety through initiatives at the league level.
In recent years, the BCHL hired former NHL official Brad Lazarowich as the league’s Officiating Director. With 30 years and nearly 2,000 NHL games under his belt, he brings an unrivaled professionalism and commitment to player safety.
With some BCHL players still enrolled in high school and others going on to college, education has always been an important subject for the BCHL.
The league is by far the country’s leader in scholarships, with over 165 committed players last year alone.
Whether it’s a team visit to a school or hospital or a food drive around the holidays, BCHL players and teams are an important part of their communities. Many teams are also supported by local businesses, so it has always been a two-way street. Community involvement will continue to be a priority to the league and teams.