The Canadian Junior Hockey League has announced its intentions for the 2023 Centennial Cup. With the 2022 running of the annual event still currently in the semifinal stage of its round robin tournament, the league has said that it will honour its promise to the city of Portage la Prairie and the region’s Portage Terriers.
Having previously been granted hosting duties for the 2020 event, Portage watched as the league cancelled the event thanks to the first wave of the COVID pandemic.
“We are thankful for the support from the MJHL, CJHL, Hockey Manitoba and Hockey Canada and look forward to hosting this prestigious national event in the Spring of 2023,” said Dale Deschouwer, co-chair of the Centennial Cup host committee. “We have everything in place from our 2020 Centennial Cup preparations to move forward seamlessly with planning and execution of the 2023 Centennial Cup.”
The event will run for roughly 10 days in May of 2023 and be held at Stride Place in Manitoba’s fifth-largest city. The dates and format has yet to be finalized, but that information will soon come from the CJHL. With a focus on the current tournament in Estevan, SK., there are other priorities at hand.
“On behalf of the CJHL we are grateful that Portage has managed the disappointment of the pandemic cancellation (2020), and has remained enthusiastic about hosting the 2023 Centennial Cup presented by Tim Hortons,” said Brent Ladds, CJHL President. “The City of Portage has been a great host for Junior A events in the past, and we are confident that the 2023 will be no exception.”
Portage actually made a formal request through Hockey Canada and the CJHL for the ability to have an opportunity to host a future Centennial Cup. The MJHL, Hockey Manitoba, Hockey Canada and the CJHL strongly supported the Portage Terriers and the City of Portage la Prairie in their request, and the 2023 Centennial Cup was granted.
“It was disappointing when the event was cancelled in the spring of 2020 due to the pandemic,” MJHL commissioner Kevin Saurette explained. “The MJHL, CJHL and Hockey Manitoba was fully supportive of the request made to Hockey Canada to allow Portage the opportunity to host the event in 2023. The Province of Manitoba and the City of Portage la Prairie have proven to be an excellent host for Canada’s National Junior A Championship, and the Portage Terriers are proven competitors and champions in previous events.”