American Hockey League cancels remainder of 2019-20 season over coronavirus pandemic

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The American Hockey League, a developmental league for the NHL, announced Monday it will be canceling the remainder of the 2019-20 season because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The AHL is the first North American sports league to cancel their season over the pandemic, which could be the first domino to fall across the sports spectrum. AHL president and CEO David Andrews added that the Calder Cup playoffs were also canceled.

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“After a lengthy review process, the American Hockey League has determined that the resumption and completion of the 2019-20 season is not feasible in light of current conditions,” Andrews said in a statement. “The League’s operational focus has turned toward actively preparing for the 2020-21 season.

“We are very grateful to the National Hockey League and its teams for their support and leadership in navigating through the challenges faced over the past two months. The AHL continues to place paramount importance on the health and safety of our players, officials, staff, and fans and all of their families, and we all look forward to returning to our arenas in 2020-21.”

According to the league, the standings and statistics as of March 12 are final and official and will be the basis for determining the awards.

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It’s unclear whether this would be an indication as to what the NHL will do. Despite speaking cautiously about a timetable, the league announced earlier this month plans to transition to Phase 2 of resuming the season, which could come sometime in mid-to-late May.

“The precise date of transition to Phase 2, during which Players might return to small group activities in NHL Club training facilities, remains undetermined,” the NHL said in a statement.

“However, provided that conditions continue to trend favorably -- and, subject to potential competitive concerns as between disparately situated markets -- we believe we may be able to move to Phase 2 at some point in the mid-to-later portion of May.”

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There are still 189 total games remaining in the NHL regular season.

Fox News’ Paulina Dedaj contributed to this report.