Daily Archives: January 26, 2012

SOURCES SAY…RUMOURS ARE…

As a sportswriter who has been around the game since 1975, I have maintained this credo: Where there is smoke, there is fire.

To be sure, there is plenty of smoke billowing throughout the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League these days. So, let’s add a little fuel to the fire:

…North Bay Trappers may once again be the major tenant at Memorial Gardens next season. Multiple sources say the Trappers’ major competition for the hockey dollar in North Bay — the Nipissing University Lakers — will be folding the tent after this season as far as their private ownership is concerned. Which could mean no more financial backing from outside the university. Which would be good news for the Trappers and the NOJHL in North Bay, which has been such a good junior hockey town for so many years.

…There will definitely be an NOJHL team in Sudbury next season. But it will be moving from McClelland Arena in Copper Cliff to the more fan-friendly Countryside Arena, which is located just off the well-travelled Long Lake Rd. bypass in Sudbury. Also, Sudbury’s NOJHL franchise will be under new ownership for next season and a few legendary alumni of the city’s Ontario Hockey League team will be a part of the new group.

…Huntsville Otters will contract from the Ontario Jr. Hockey League and the Muskoka town will have a franchise in the NOJHL as early as next season. Sources say a former Huntsville town councillor is involved in a would-be ownership group that would put a franchise in the NOJHL. Huntsville is perfect from an NOJHL point of view: Folks from Southern Ontario think it’s in Northern Ontario and folks from Northern Ontario think it’s in Southern Ontario. Fact is, with the new four lane highway, travel time from Huntsville to North Bay is a mere 55-minute drive. Huntsville, to be sure, would be good for the NOJHL in that it would be a very-attractive gathering place for Major Junior and Division 1, National Collegiate Athletic Association scouts.