SJHL announces postponement of Millionaires games until further notice due to COVID-19 case associated with the team

Logo Courtesy SJHL Website.

On the eve of the 2021-22 Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League season getting underway, the Melville Millionaires have been forced to the sidelines.

The league and the team announced in a joint statement on Thursday night that the Millionaires’ games have been postponed until further notice due to a positive COVID-19 case associated with the club.

“After consultation with local health officials, the Melville Millionaires in conjunction with the SJHL are exercising extreme caution and considering the health and safety for all players, coaches and staff of the teams, as well as the fans and the respective communities that the players live in,” SJHL commissioner Bill Chow said in a prepared statement.

“Any health matter is private in nature. The SJHL and the Melville Millionaires will have no further comments at this time.”

The Millionaires had played in eight pre-season games from Sept. 6 to Sept. 19, which saw them compete in home-and-home matchups against the Humboldt Broncos and Notre Dame Hounds, in addition to four contests against the archrival Yorkton Terriers.

They were slated to start their regular season slate on Friday by visiting the Weyburn Red Wings, before holding their home opener against the Red Wings on Saturday in Melville.

Their upcoming schedule includes a road game against the Broncos on Wednesday, Sept. 29, a home tilt with the Estevan Bruins on Friday, Oct. 1, a road contest with the Kindersley Klippers on Sunday, Oct. 3 and a pair of games at the SJHL’s showcase tournament in Warman on Monday, Oct. 4 and Tuesday, Oct. 5 with the Battlefords North Stars and the Melfort Mustangs.

“The decision for postponement did not come easy, but we all feel that this is the best decision to make at this time to mitigate the potential risks,” Chow said.

“The SJHL will work with the Melville Millionaires and teams affected by the postponement in rescheduling and will announce when that information is available.”

As of early Thursday evening, it had yet to be announced how many Millionaires games will be postponed.

The SJHL campaign is still slated to start on Friday with the Klippers hosting the North Stars, the Terriers visiting the Bruins, the Nipawin Hawks taking on the La Ronge Ice Wolves, the Flin Flon Bombers facing the Mustangs and the Broncos squaring off with the Hounds.