When it comes to junior hockey in Western Canada, watching the GMHL West and CAJHL is like watching a bad “slasher” movie. We all know that the girl being chased by the lunatic with the chainsaw is going to run into the garage where the extra chainsaws are waiting instead of jumping into the car with the engine running because she has to save one of her friends who is really already dead.
The GMHL West, and the CAJHL are for the most part playing the roles of the dead friends and there are a few people playing the roles of the girl running into the garage full of chainsaws.
The “turf war” between the GMHL West and the CAJHL has brought Western Canada the lowest level junior hockey in Canadian history along with the worst displays of league management in modern hockey history.
Within the same footprint the GMHL West and the CAJHL have put a total of fifteen “teams” on the ice recruiting from the same very limited player pools. The recruiting being done by these two leagues is largely the same, targeting the same indigenous young men and the tribal leaders that financially support them.
We are not talking about communities with large metropolitan areas. We are talking about a lot of “one horse towns” with little more than a movie theater and shopping mall as entertainment options.
Nothing says quality and community pride quite like these GMHL West teams.
The Gibbons Pioneers are still perfect with a record of 0 and 15 while allowing 154 goals against in those games.
The Burns Lake Timbermen are also perfect at 0 and 5 with cancelled games and 40 goals against in the contests they actually played. Great job boys!
Tumbler Ridge finally started their season with a perfect 0 and 3 start and 31 goals against all nine of those players.
Fox Creek is a stellar 3 and 13 while Kitimat is hot on their heels with a 3 and 2 start.
In the nuclear fallout that is the CAJHL you have one incredible organization making a name for themselves.
The Barrhead Bombers are actually sharpening the chainsaws for the lunatic with an astounding 0-9-1 record and a sacred one point in the standings while allowing 103 goals against in those ten games.
The rest of the five team “league” continues to chug along with canceled or rescheduled games from time to time, and undermanned rosters.
Each and every one of these teams in these leagues should be folding. Each one should pack it in and realize that all these one-horse towns really can’t support junior hockey, and there are not enough players to go around that would actually be called junior hockey players for these teams to exist.
The real shocker is that parents and tribal leaders are still paying for this garbage.
Just in case you did not know it, no scouts are watching. No scouts are coming. The promise of scouting is simply one that will never come to pass.
The CAJHL hasn’t even updated their league website since announcing a “showcase” on August 11th. Yes, more than three months ago. Oh yes, and if you look at their commitment page, well it’s just blank, as in zero commitments. But at least they don’t lie about commitments like the GMHL does.
The GMHL West really has excelled at deception after graduating from the GMHL school of doing business. Setting up shop with not enough players, while moving coaches and loaning players from team to team trying to make it look like some teams are actually organized.
You know why the GMHL says nothing about this? Because they have been doing this for years across Canada. Filling the pockets of the league offices with the dollars of unsuspecting fools who are so desperate to say they played junior hockey that they are willing to play at the lowest levels in North America.
These prolonged death spirals are hard to watch. It’s even harder when people call it junior hockey and it really is not. But hey, it’s a free country, and everyone has a credit card, so keep on lining up to pay. Lets put on a happy face for all those scouts now.