The Kamloops Storm playing the 100 Mile Wrangers at West Fraser Centre in November 2017. In the 2018-19 season, all players will be required to wear full cage masks. Melanie Law photo

Full hockey cages made mandatory on helmets for Junior B players

Fans of Junior B will be seeing a lot more fishbowls in the arena

The provincial hockey union, BC Hockey, has made full cages in Junior B hockey mandatory taking effect during 2018-19.

The decision was made on Dec. 5 and will affect all Kootenay International Junior Hockey League (KIJHL) teams, including the Kamloops Storm, who’ve been playing some of their regular season games in Quesnel this season.

General manager and head coach of the 100 Mile Wranglers Dale Hladun was surprised at the decision, not knowing it was even being discussed.

“I understand they’re doing it to reduce insurance premiums and all that stuff because of facial injuries,” said Hladun.

“Whether I have an opinion or not on it isn’t the point, it’s law and we just have to deal with it.”

The KIJHL is not the only league required to adapt, with the Pacific Junior Hockey League, the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League and the two British Columbian teams active in the Albertan based North West Junior Hockey League (Fort St. John Huskies and Dawson Creek Junior Canucks) also having to comply.

With the decision across the board, it means no players who disagree with the new ruling can jump ship, but Hladun figures it won’t affect the players much.

“The kids at our level, their goal is to go to Junior A and on to college and if you go to college, especially in the States, everybody has masks.

“Some of the kids want to wear half-shields and I get it, but throughout minor hockey, they had to wear them [cages] then so I guess they have to keep wearing them.”

Hladun, while admitting the full cages could help with keeping facial and dental injuries down, has considered how the change will impact the teams budget.

The team already supplies players with half shields, but Hladun wasn’t sure how much supplying cages would increase the expenditure on equipment. He did assert the team must adjust and comply with the ruling.

“I think some of us hockey guys, we get set in our ways with the way it should be and the game is always evolving and part of that is protection,” said Hladun.

“So if this hopefully keeps premiums down for the kids to play because hockey is expensive.”

Just Posted

Quesnel archers score three golds at 55+ games

Stu Murray won two golds and Al Fleck won one in Cranbrook last week

Quesnel’s Terry Fox Run raises over $20,000

Local event had decent turnout and stellar fundraising results

Ministry of Transportation to hold info session on West Fraser Road washout

The meeting will take place at Buckridge Community Hall on Sept. 20

Lindsay Woods is running for Quesnel City Council

Woods was born and raised in Quesnel, and moved back recently

Baezaeko Complex fires no longer Wildfires of Note

The BC Wildfire Service has downgraded all local fires and disbanded incident management team

Trudeau upset after meeting with Saskatchewan chiefs

Trudeau is upset about how time was managed in a recent meeting

Abdelrazik torture lawsuit delay would be unconscionable: lawyer

The federal government is making a last-minute plea to delay the Federal Court hearing

B.C. tent city ‘devastated’ after flash flood

Maple Ridge mayor says that residents shouldn’t have to return to their flooded tents

Filipino-Canadians concerned about family after typhoon hits Philippines

Typhoon Mangkhut has killed 66 people in the Philippines and four in China

Ottawa looks at having retired judge help guide renewed pipeline review process

The feds would only says that ‘multiple options were on the table’

Canada bans use of trans fats in food products

Trans fats are know to cause heart disease

Yukon suspect in B.C. mail bombing makes court appearance

Whitehorse man Leon Nepper faces charges related to a mail bomb sent to a Port Alice home Sept. 11

Nearly 80% of British Columbians support a ban on handguns in cities

86% support a ban on military-style assault weapons

Most Read