The Canadian Junior Hockey League is proud to announce that 129 CJHL alumni were on NHL rosters during the opening week of the 2013 NHL season. A total of 36 former CJHL players are members of Canadian NHL teams, including eight on the Vancouver Canucks roster, the most of all Canadian teams.
Vancouver Canucks defenceman and British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL) alumnus, Jason Garrison, believes the CJHL prepared him for his NHL career. “The coaching all my years of junior hockey was tremendous; that was the best part. It’s all about getting players to the next level,” said Garrison. “I think for me, it was just developing as a player and as a person. On the hockey side of things, it was good because it was really competitive. If you’re not performing, you’re not playing.”
The Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers have brought 10 CJHL alumni to Alberta this year with five former players on each roster. Calgary Flames forward Mike Cammalleri developed his career in the Ontario Junior Hockey League (OJHL). “Junior A was a great experience for me and I learned so much playing in the league”, said Cammalleri. “I was fortunate to be part of a Championship team and still some of my best friends are guys I played with in Bramalea”.
Mark Letestu of the Columbus Blue Jackets took advantage of the opportunity to advance from the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) to college hockey on his way to the NHL. “Playing in the Canadian Junior Hockey League for three years gave me the opportunity and platform to extend my playing career and also my education by way of NCAA,” said Letestu. “I valued my time in Junior A, it allowed me to develop as a player and person making the transition to the next level much easier to adjust.”
Over 560 CJHL alumni are enjoying professional careers in leagues across North America this season, including the National Hockey League, American Hockey League, ECHL and Central Hockey League.
• 129 alumni in the National Hockey League
• 191 alumni in the American Hockey League
• 248 alumni in the ECHL and Central Hockey League
An additional 295 CJHL alumni have made the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) home for the 2012-2013 season and will continue their athletic and academic quests.
Earlier this season, the Canadian Junior Hockey League announced the success of its alumni at the college and university level with over 1,950 former CJHL players pursuing academic and hockey careers across North America in the 2012-2013 season. In total, over 2,800 CJHL alumni are pursuing their hockey careers at the professional, major junior and college level this season.