Manitoba Junior Hockey League
|Current season or competition:|
2021–22 MJHL season
|Former name(s)||Winnipeg and District League|
|No. of teams||12|
|Associated Title(s)||ANAVET Cup|
|Recent Champions||Portage Terriers|
|Most successful club||Winnipeg Blues (17)|
The MJHL consists of twelve teams with a 13th scheduled to begin play for the 2022–23 season. Eight teams qualify for the playoffs with each round determined by best-of-seven series. The playoff champion is awarded the Turnbull Cup, the Junior 'A' championship trophy for the province of Manitoba.  The winner of the MJHL playoffs (Turnbull Cup) competes against the champion from Saskatchewan for the ANAVET Cup and a berth in the Centennial Cup (formerly known as the Royal Bank Cup).
1918 to 1939Edit
The league's first year of operation was the 1918–19 season, making it the oldest junior league in Canada. It was known as the Winnipeg and District League until 1931, when it became the Manitoba Junior Hockey League. During the inaugural season, there were nine teams in two divisions, each playing a six-game schedule. The teams included the Winnipeg Pilgrims, Elmwood, Grand Trunk Pacific, Winnipeg Tigers, Young Men's Lutheran Club, Winnipeg Argonauts, Selkirk Fishermen, Weston, and Winnipeg Monarchs.
In the 1936–37 season, both the north and south MJHL divisions wanted to play games at the larger Winnipeg Amphitheatre since they could increase their share of the gate receipts. Multiple disputes arose over the scheduling of games, which led to Manitoba Amateur Hockey Association (MAHA) executives forming a special committee to arbitrate that all north division games be played at the Olympic Rink.
1940s and 1950sEdit
Teams in the north division struggled financially during World War II and sought a new financial arrangement for the 1940–41 season. The teams also disagreed on who played in which division, with some teams threatening to disband if their demands were not met. Jimmy Dunn recommended to split the gate receipts evenly between the teams and the rink owners, and for the MAHA to subsidize the teams as needed. The north division played the season reduced to four teams. The 1944–45 season was the first interlocking schedule between the north and south divisions, and the MAHA implemented of limits on the number of player transfers for balanced competition.
In the 1945–46 season, the north division teams threatened to withdraw from the MJHL unless several demands were met. They felt that the south division was given preferential treatment, and sought to equally share games at the larger Winnipeg Amphitheatre and the profits from gate receipts. The north division complained about the lack of available ice time for practices and the deplorable dressing room conditions at the Olympic Rink, and felt that the MAHA had an obligation to make the upgrades if the rink would not. After negotiations broke down, three junior teams withdrew and the MJHL operated with five teams in one division.
The stronger MJHL teams — the Winnipeg Rangers, Winnipeg Monarchs, Brandon Wheat Kings and Portage Terriers — were sponsored by National Hockey League (NHL) clubs and wanted to form an "A" division and play all games at the Winnipeg Amphitheatre for the 1946–47 season, and relegate all other teams to the "B" division at the Olympic Rink. The four teams were also opposed to any other teams being added to their division. The Winnipeg Tribune felt that these teams had pursued their own selfish interests with disregard for the general welfare of the league, and that creating the division would perpetuate the previous issues unless a "minor miracle" happened. The MAHA executive chose to include the St. James Orioles as a fifth team in the "A" division after being convinced that the team was soundly operated and would be able to compete.
In 1955, the brothers Art and Gordon Stratton of the Winnipeg Barons set a league record for most points in a single season with 76 each. In 1957, Ray Brunel of the St. Boniface Canadiens broke it with 105.
In the 1959–60 season, MAHA president Earl Dawson sought a better financial arrangement with the Saskatchewan Amateur Hockey Association (SAHA) to recuperate the costs of developing minor hockey players and on-ice officials in Flin Flon, after the Flin Flon Bombers affiliated with the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) instead of the MJHL. When the Brandon Wheat Kings also wanted to play in the SJHL, the MAHA renogotiated the financial arrangement to prevent the loss of another team to an out-of-province league.
1960 to 1968Edit
In the early 1960s, the powerhouse Brandon Wheat Kings, built by Jake Milford, won three titles in a row, and four in five years. In 1961, goalie Ernie Wakely of the Winnipeg Braves was named Canada's outstanding junior hockey player for the month of January.
The MJHL began the 1961–62 season using international ice hockey rules without body checking as an effort to attract more spectators, and hired a new promotional director. In November 1961, CAHA president Jack Roxburgh ordered the MJHL to revert to standard Canadian rules since it had not been approved by the national body.
In 1962, Clarence Campbell president of the NHL attended inaugural Manitoba–Saskatchewan all-star game in Winnipeg. In 1963, Jim Irving, captain of the Winnipeg Rangers, was named Manitoba's outstanding junior athlete and received the Carl Pederson Memorial Award.
Jimmy Dunn was hired as commissioner of the MJHL in May 1964. The league had been reduced to four teams based in the Greater Winnipeg area after the withdrawal of the Brandon Wheat Kings and the Fort Frances Royals. The MJHL transitioned from a draft of players in the Greater Winnipeg Minor Hockey Association, into a system where each team chose players from a set geographic district. The new "zoning" arrangement was planned to be in effect for three seasons to stimulate more localized interest in junior hockey and aimed to keep teammates together from the minor hockey level to the junior hockey level. Dunn supported the change and noted that the concept had produced forward lines on previous Memorial Cup championship teams from Winnipeg.
For the 1964–65 MJHL season, the Charlie Gardiner Memorial Trophy series was revived as a preseason tournament for the league's teams. Dunn reached an agreement to televise MJHL games on CJAY-TV, and the league experimented with playing games on Sunday evenings instead of afternoons to increase its attendance and avoid competing with televised football games. Dunn requested to the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association (CAHA) that the MJHL waive its bye into the Abbott Cup finals and its playoffs champion meet the Thunder Bay Junior A Hockey League champion in the first round. He felt that the loss of gate receipts from a bye was a financial hardship for the MJHL, and shorten the league's playoffs to accommodate the change approved by the CAHA. Goaltender Wayne Stephenson led the Winnipeg Braves to the MJHL Championship in 1965.
For the 1965–66 MJHL season, Dunn implemented an automatic one-game minimum suspension for any player who received a match penalty. He felt that professional hockey influenced fisticuffs in junior hockey and said that, "Any time there's a big fight in the National Hockey League, the kids drop their sticks and put up their dukes in the next game. It happens almost every time".
The MJHL expanded from four to six teams for the 1966–67 MJHL season when it readmitted the Brandon Wheat Kings and accepted the Selkirk Steelers. Dunn announced his resignation as commissioner on October 24, 1966, and cited personal reasons. Despite being offered a pay raise, he felt that the increase in teams made the job too much for him and had "taken the fun out of it". His resignation came shortly after a game between the Winnipeg Rangers and the Brandon Wheat Kings in which 242 penalty minutes were given in the first period.
In 1966–67, future Hall of Famer Bobby Clarke of the Flin Flon Bombers set league records for most goals (71), assists (112), and points (183) in a single season. Clarke led the Bombers to win the MJHL title.
1967 to 1970: The New MJHLEdit
During the summer of 1967, the MAHA allowed three teams from Manitoba to enter the new Western Canadian Hockey League (WCHL): the Brandon Wheat Kings and Flin Flon Bombers from the MJHL, and Ben Hatskin's new Winnipeg Jets club. Hatskin already owned three MJHL teams, so as part of the agreement, divested his entire MJHL portfolio to local interests. The Winnipeg Warriors became the West Kildonan North Stars, the St. James Braves became the St. James Canadians, and the Winnipeg Rangers became the St. Boniface Saints. These three teams and the Winnipeg Monarchs became "the new MJHL". The Selkirk Steelers instead departed for the upstart Central Manitoba Junior Hockey League (CMJHL). The CMJHL was short-lived and its four teams were absorbed by the MJHL the following year. The Steelers, Portage Terriers, Dauphin Kings, and Kenora Muskies, who had operated out of Fort Garry the previous year, were placed in the MJHL's new North Division, while the existing MJHL teams made up the South Division.
On September 19, 1968, the Winnipeg Monarchs announced the signing of Hiroshi Hori, a defenceman from Japan. Hori, a high school all-star in his homeland, would spend a year with the team and then return home to pass on what he had learned. A Canadian missionary to Japan, Father Moran was behind the idea. With CAHA approval, Moran convinced the Japanese Skating Union to sponsor one player to a year in Canada. The CAHA chose Winnipeg as the site because of the added experience from watching the Canadian National Team, and the Monarchs volunteered.
On Sunday February 9, 1969, the MJHL held a special emergency meeting to discuss Butch Goring leaving the Winnipeg Jets of the WCHL and joining the Dauphin Kings. Goring played the night before in Kenora for the Kings during a regular season game. The MJHL gave the Kings approval to use Goring in regular season and playoff games. Goring was leading the WCHL in goals at the time. Monday, WCHL president Ron Butlin said a court injunction would be sought against Goring and another Jet forward Merv Haney from playing with the Dauphin Kings. Also saying the CHA would be "taking whatever action is necessary against Dauphin and the MAHA for damages." Goring and Haney would play for the Kings, all the way to the Western Memorial Cup Finals.
The reorganization of junior hockey in Canada in 1970 relegated the MJHL to Tier II status, now to be called Junior 'A'. MJHL champions would no longer play for the Memorial Cup; instead, a new national junior 'A' championship, the Manitoba Centennial Cup (now the Centennial Cup) was created. This new alignment would eventually lead to the formation of the Canadian Junior Hockey League in 1993.
1970 to 2000Edit
The Dauphin Kings were the first "dynasty" of the new MJHL, winning the league three out of four years, 1969, 1970, and 1972, and boasting such stars as Ron Low, Butch Goring, and Ron Chipperfield. The Kings went to the Western Memorial Cup final in 1969, and in 1972 recorded 40 wins, a modern-day MJHL record. Charlie Simmer of the Kenora Muskies won the scoring title in 1973, the same year the Portage Terriers were crowned National Champs, winning the Centennial Cup. In 1974, the Selkirk Steelers won the national crown, giving the MJHL back to back "Canadian Championships". It was players such as Low, Goring, Chipperfield, Simmer, Chuck Arnason, Murray Bannerman, Paul Baxter, John Bednarski, Rick Blight, Dan Bonar, Brian Engblom, Glen Hanlon, Bob Joyce, Barry Legge, Perry Miller, Chris Oddleifson, Curt Ridley, Rick St. Croix, Blaine Stoughton, and Andy Van Hellemond who gave the new MJHL its foundation.
The Selkirk Steelers dominated, between 1974 and 1987, winning eight MJHL championships, including three in a row. The 1974 Steelers were inducted into the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame, as were the 1973 Portage Terriers. In 1975, Jim Misener of the Dauphin Kings led the league in goals with 73, breaking Bobby Clarke's single season record of 71. In 1977, the Dauphin Kings won their fourth MJHL title in a decade, led by Misener who became the MJHL career leader in goals, assists, and points.
In September 1971, Winnipeg Monarchs President Bob Westmacott announced 17-year-old Stephan Lindberg of Sweden had been invited to training camp. Jack Bownass, former coach of Canada's national team, recommended Lindberg to the Monarchs.
On April 5, 1977, MJHL commissioner Bill Addison called off the Turnbull Cup Finals between the Dauphin Kings and Kildonan North Stars, saying "No, I am not going to allow these characters an opportunity to beat on each other any longer. I am calling the series (a best-of-seven) and awarding it to Dauphin on the basis they won two of the three games completed." The decision came just hours after the two clubs had engaged in a pre-game brawl, in which two Kings players were taken to hospital and two North Stars were criminally charged. Chris Walby was convicted of common assault, and granted a conditional discharge. The Canadian Amateur Hockey Association was not as kind, suspending Walby for life.
Grant Ledyard led the Winnipeg South Blues to the first of four MJHL Championships in 8 years in 1982. In 1983, Mike Ridley of the St. Boniface Saints broke both Jim Misener's goal scoring record and Bobby Clarke's points record. In 95, Cory Cyrenne of the Saints was chosen Canadian Junior A Hockey League (CJAHL) Player of the Year, and the Winnipeg South Blues won their fifth championship, on their road to a second Anavet Cup, and an Abbott Cup. The 1995 Blues were inducted into Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame. In 1998, Jedd Crumb of the Blues led the CJAHL in goals with 61.
2000 to presentEdit
As the twenty first century dawned, the OCN Blizzard were dominating the MJHL, winning five straight MJHL championships from 1999 to 2003. This was a record previously achieved by only the legendary Elmwood Millionaires (1927–1931). Junior Lessard of the Portage Terriers was named CJAHL Player of the Year in 2000. Blizzard goaltenders Preston McKay (1998) and Marc Andre Leclerc (2001) led the CJAHL in goals against average, and left winger Andrew Coates (2003) led in goals. In 2004, Aaron Starr of the Blizzard became the first MJHL player to lead the CJAHL in scoring with 118 points.
As the Blizzard's dynasty came to an end, the Portage Terriers began their own golden age with a trip to the MJHL finals in 2003-04. The Terriers lost the series, but laid claim to the Turnbull Cup and ANAVET Cup titles the following season. This would start a run of nine championships over fifteen seasons, plus three ANAVET Cup wins and the 2015 national championship. The 2014-15 Terriers set a new league record for single-season winning percentage (.917) when they dominated the MJHL with a 53-3-4 record during the regular season and went undefeated in the playoffs to capture their ninth Turnbull Cup. The Terriers capped off their dream season by winning the 2015 Royal Bank Cup on home ice in Portage la Prairie. The Terriers dominated again the following season, putting up an impressive 31-game winning streak on their way to a second consecutive Turnbull Cup.
Since relocating to Steinbach in 2009, the Steinbach Pistons have also been a dominant club, leading the regular season in points on three occasions, winning two Turnbull Cups, and the ANAVET Cup in 2018.
Neepawa Natives hazing incidentEdit
In October 2011, the Neepawa Natives were involved a hazing incident that garnered significant negative publicity, both locally and nationally. After the league conducted its investigation, commissioner Kim Davis confirmed that a 15-year-old player had come forward with allegations of sexual-based rookie hazing in the team's locker room. A record $5,000 fine and 18 suspensions resulted from the incident and the matter was referred to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, although no criminal charges resulted. The team gained even more negative press by benching and refusing to release or trade the 15-year-old who brought the issue to light.
The MJHL consists of twelve teams separated geographically into two divisions, with a 13th club to be added for the 2022–23 season. The league has gone to a single division format on occasion, most notably from 1945 to 1968 and more recently from 2014 to 2020. A three-division format was implemented for the partially completed 2020–21 season that was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
|Portage Terriers||Portage la Prairie||Stride Place||1942|
|Selkirk Steelers||Selkirk||Selkirk Recreation Complex||1966|
|Steinbach Pistons||Steinbach||T.G. Smith Centre||1988|
|Winkler Flyers||Winkler||Winkler Arena||1980|
|Winnipeg Blues||Oak Bluff||The Rink Training Centre||1930|
|Winnipeg Freeze||Winnipeg||Dakota Community Centre||2020|
|Dauphin Kings||Dauphin||Credit Union Place||1967|
|Neepawa Titans||Neepawa||Yellowhead Centre||1989|
|OCN Blizzard||Opaskwayak||Gordon Lathlin Memorial Centre||1996|
|Swan Valley Stampeders||Swan River||Swan River Centennial Arena||1999|
|Virden Oil Capitals||Virden||Tundra Oil & Gas Place||1956|
|Waywayseecappo Wolverines||Waywayseecappo||Waywayseecappo Wolverines Complex||1999|
|Niverville Junior A Hockey Team||Niverville||Niverville Recreation Centre||2022|
- Beausejour Blades
- Brandon Elks
- Brandon Travellers
- CUAC Blues
- East Kildonan Bisons
- Elmwood Maple Leafs
- Elmwood Millionaires
- Kenora Muskies
- Kildonan North Stars
- Southeast Blades/Thunderbirds
- St. Boniface Athletics
- St. Boniface Canadiens
- St. Boniface Seals
- Steinbach Hawks
- Stonewall Jets
- St. James Canadians (1936–45)
- St. James Canadians (1967–2003)
- St. James Orioles
- Thompson King Miners
- Thunder Bay Hornets
- Winnipeg Air Cadets
- Winnipeg Esquires
- Winnipeg Monarchs
- Winnipeg Rangers/Black Hawks/Barons
- Winnipeg Rangers (1956–67)
- Winnipeg Hockey Club
- Winnipeg Junior Falcons
- Winnipeg/St. Boniface Saints
- Winnipeg Wellingtons
- Wolseley Flyers
Turnbull Cup ChampionsEdit
The Turnbull Memorial Trophy, or Turnbull Cup, is awarded to the Manitoba Junior 'A' hockey champion each season. The provincial championship coincides with the MJHL playoffs and all member clubs are eligible for the dual title of league and provincial champion. Prior to the creation of the Canadian Junior Hockey League, rival Junior 'A' leagues in Manitoba were sometimes included in Turnbull Cup competition and a playoff series between respective league champions determined the provincial championship. This was the case when the Central Manitoba Junior Hockey League and NorMan Junior Hockey League were in operation in 1968 and from 1980 to 1985, respectively.
The trophy was donated by the Winnipeg Hockey Club in 1920 to honour Walter James "Ollie" Turnbull, a captain in the 10th Brigade Canadian Field Artillery, who was killed in action during the First World War. The trophy underwent a major refurbishment in 2018.
|Winnipeg & District League Championship[a]|
|1918||Selkirk Fishermen||Fort Rouge Wanderers|
|1919||Winnipeg YMLC||Winnipeg Pilgrims|
|Turnbull Cup (Memorial Cup Era)|
|1920||Selkirk Fishermen||Winnipeg YMLC|
|1921||Winnipeg Falcons||Portage la Prairie|
|1922||University of Manitoba||Brandon|
|1923||University of Manitoba||Brandon|
|1924||Winnipeg Tammany Tigers||Dauphin|
|1925||University of Manitoba||Portage la Prairie Vics|
|1926||Winnipeg Tammany Tigers||Portage la Prairie Vics|
|1931||Elmwood Millionaires||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1933||Brandon Native Sons||Winnipeg Winnipegs|
|1934||Kenora Thistles[b]||Brandon Native Sons|
|1935||Winnipeg Monarchs||The Pas Huskies|
|1936||Elmwood Maple Leafs||Emerson Aces|
|1937||Winnipeg Monarchs||St. Boniface Seals|
|1938||St. Boniface Seals||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1939||Brandon Elks||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1940||Kenora Thistles[b]||Elmwood Maple Leafs|
|1941||Winnipeg Rangers||East Kildonan Bisons|
|1942||Portage Terriers||St. Boniface Athletics|
|1943||Winnipeg Rangers||St. Boniface Athletics|
|1944||St. James Canadians||St. Boniface Athletics|
|1945||Winnipeg Monarchs||Winnipeg Esquires-Red Wings|
|1946||Winnipeg Monarchs||Brandon Elks|
|1947||Brandon Elks||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1948||Winnipeg Monarchs||Winnipeg Canadiens|
|1949||Brandon Wheat Kings||Winnipeg Canadiens|
|1950||Brandon Wheat Kings|
|1951||Winnipeg Monarchs||Brandon Wheat Kings|
|1952||Winnipeg Monarchs||Brandon Wheat Kings|
|1953||St. Boniface Canadiens||Brandon Wheat Kings|
|1954||St. Boniface Canadiens||Brandon Wheat Kings|
|1955||Winnipeg Monarchs||Winnipeg Barons|
|1956||St. Boniface Canadiens||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1957||Winnipeg Monarchs||St. Boniface Canadiens|
|1958||St. Boniface Canadiens||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1959||Winnipeg Braves||St. Boniface Canadiens|
|1960||Brandon Wheat Kings||Winnipeg Rangers|
|1961||Winnipeg Rangers||Brandon Wheat Kings|
|1962||Brandon Wheat Kings||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1963||Brandon Wheat Kings||St. Boniface Canadiens|
|1964||Brandon Wheat Kings||Fort Frances Royals|
|1965||Winnipeg Braves||Winnipeg Monarchs|
|1966||Winnipeg Rangers||Winnipeg Braves|
|1967||Flin Flon Bombers||Brandon Wheat Kings|
|1968||St. James Canadians||Selkirk Steelers (CMJHL)[c]|
|1969||Dauphin Kings||St. Boniface Saints|
|1970||Dauphin Kings||St. James Canadians|
|Turnbull Cup (Centennial Cup Era)|
|1971||St. Boniface Saints||Kenora Muskies|
|1972||Dauphin Kings||West Kildonan North Stars|
|1973||Portage Terriers||St. James Canadians|
|1974||Selkirk Steelers||West Kildonan North Stars|
|1975||Selkirk Steelers||West Kildonan North Stars|
|1976||Selkirk Steelers||West Kildonan North Stars|
|1977||Dauphin Kings||Kildonan North Stars|
|1978||Kildonan North Stars||Dauphin Kings|
|1979||Selkirk Steelers||Kildonan North Stars|
|1980||Selkirk Steelers||Thompson King Miners (NJHL)[d]|
|1981||St. Boniface Saints||Thompson King Miners (NJHL)[d]|
|1982||Winnipeg South Blues||Flin Flon Bombers (NJHL)[d]|
|1983||Dauphin Kings||The Pas Huskies (NJHL)[d]|
|1984||Selkirk Steelers||Flin Flon Bombers (NJHL)[d]|
|1985||Selkirk Steelers||Thompson King Miners (NJHL)[d]|
|1986||Winnipeg South Blues||Selkirk Steelers|
|1987||Selkirk Steelers||Winnipeg South Blues|
|1988||Winnipeg South Blues||Portage Terriers|
|1989||Winnipeg South Blues||Selkirk Steelers|
|1990||Portage Terriers||Kildonan North Stars|
|1991||Winkler Flyers||Winnipeg South Blues|
|1992||Winkler Flyers||St. James Canadians|
|1993||Dauphin Kings||St. Boniface Saints|
|1994||St. Boniface Saints||Winkler Flyers|
|1995||Winnipeg South Blues||Winkler Flyers|
|1996||St. James Canadians||Neepawa Natives|
|1997||St. James Canadians||OCN Blizzard|
|1998||Winkler Flyers||St. James Canadians|
|1999||OCN Blizzard||Winnipeg South Blues|
|2000||OCN Blizzard||Winnipeg South Blues|
|2001||OCN Blizzard||Winkler Flyers|
|2002||OCN Blizzard||Winkler Flyers|
|2003||OCN Blizzard||Southeast Blades|
|2004||Selkirk Steelers||Portage Terriers|
|2005||Portage Terriers||Selkirk Steelers|
|2006||Winnipeg South Blues||OCN Blizzard|
|2007||Selkirk Steelers||Dauphin Kings|
|2008||Portage Terriers||Winnipeg Saints|
|2009||Portage Terriers||Selkirk Steelers|
|2010||Dauphin Kings||Winnipeg Saints|
|2011||Portage Terriers||Selkirk Steelers|
|2012||Portage Terriers||Winnipeg Saints|
|2013||Steinbach Pistons||Dauphin Kings|
|2014||Winnipeg Blues||Dauphin Kings|
|2015||Portage Terriers||Steinbach Pistons|
|2016||Portage Terriers||Steinbach Pistons|
|2017||Portage Terriers||OCN Blizzard|
|2018||Steinbach Pistons||Virden Oil Capitals|
|2019||Portage Terriers||Swan Valley Stampeders|
- The league's two first two seasons predated the Turnbull Cup.
- The Kenora Thistles are the only MJHL club from outside of Manitoba to win the Turnbull Cup.
- For the 1967-68 season, the MJHL champion played the Central Manitoba Junior Hockey League champion for the Turnbull Cup.
- From 1980 to 1985, the MJHL champion played the NorMan Junior Hockey League champion for the Turnbull Cup.
- The 2019-20 playoffs were cancelled midway through the first round in response to the COVID-19 pandemic
- The 2020-21 season was halted November 12, 2020 and officially cancelled February 12, 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Post MJHL PlayoffsEdit
Since 1970-71, the Turnbull Cup champion has played the Saskatchewan champion, the winner of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) playoffs, for the ANAVET Cup. The winner of that series earns a berth in the Centennial Cup, the national Junior 'A' championship (known as the Royal Bank Cup from 1996 to 2018).
Prior to 1991, the ANAVET Cup champions advanced to the Abbott Cup against the winner of Doyle Cup with the winner going on to face the Eastern Canada champions for the national Junior 'A' title. Beginning in 1991, the national championship format was expanded to include both the ANAVET and Doyle Cup champions, after which the Abbott Cup series no longer was played and the champion was crowned from the results of the round robin part of the national championship. The Abbott Cup was formally retired in 1999.
Between 2013 and 2017, the ANAVET and Doyle Cups were replaced by the Western Canada Cup (WCC), a regional tournament that determined the two Western Canadian seeds at the national championship. No MJHL clubs captured the WCC during its five-year run; however, the Dauphin Kings and Portage Terriers as runners-up in 2014 and 2015, respectively, to capture the second Western seed at the national championship.
Since the tournament format for the Centennial Cup began in 1985, MJHL clubs have hosted national championships on three occasions: 1992 in Winnipeg, 2010 in Dauphin, and 2015 in Portage la Prairie. Portage la Prairie was also selected to host the 2020 championship which was cancelled at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prior to the reorganization of Canadian junior hockey in 1970, the MJHL champion played for the Memorial Cup, the former Canadian Tier I Junior championship. These post-MJHL playoffs were commonly known as the Memorial Cup playoffs. For the MJHL clubs, the road was firstly the western semi-finals and finals for the Abbott Cup, and then the Memorial Cup Finals. During this 53-year era (1918–1970), MJHL clubs won 18 Abbott Cups, and 11 Memorial Cups.
Manitoba/Saskatchewan Junior ‘A’ Hockey ChampionshipsEdit
ANAVET Cup (1971–2012, 2017–present)
- 1971 St. Boniface Saints
- 1973 Portage Terriers
- 1974 Selkirk Steelers
- 1975 Selkirk Steelers
- 1983 Dauphin Kings
- 1986 Winnipeg South Blues
- 1992 Winkler Flyers
- 1995 Winnipeg South Blues
- 2002 OCN Blizzard
- 2005 Portage Terriers
- 2007 Selkirk Steelers
- 2010 Dauphin Kings
- 2011 Portage Terriers
- 2018 Steinbach Pistons
- 2019 Portage Terriers
Western Canadian Junior Hockey ChampionshipsEdit
Abbott Cup (1919–1970) Western Canadian Junior Championships
- 1920 Selkirk Fishermen
- 1921 Winnipeg Junior Falcons
- 1923 University of Manitoba
- 1929 Elmwood Millionaires
- 1931 Elmwood Millionaires
- 1932 Winnipeg Monarchs
- 1935 Winnipeg Monarchs
- 1937 Winnipeg Monarchs
- 1938 St. Boniface Seals
- 1940 Kenora Thistles
- 1941 Winnipeg Rangers
- 1942 Portage Terriers
- 1943 Winnipeg Rangers
- 1946 Winnipeg Monarchs
- 1949 Brandon Wheat Kings
- 1951 Winnipeg Monarchs
- 1953 St. Boniface Canadiens
- 1959 Winnipeg Braves
Abbott Cup (1971–1999) Western Canadian Junior ‘A’ Championships
National Junior Hockey ChampionshipsEdit
Memorial Cup (1919–1970) National Junior Championships
Centennial Cup (1971–1995, 2019–present) National Junior ‘A’ Championships
Royal Bank Cup (1996–2018) National Junior ‘A’ Championships
- 2015 Portage Terriers
Over the years, more than 200 MJHL players have gone on to the National Hockey League (NHL), and 11 of those MJHL graduates have been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame including; Andy Bathgate, Turk Broda, Art Coulter, Bobby Clarke, Charlie Gardiner, Bryan Hextall, Tom Johnson, Harry Oliver, Babe Pratt, Terry Sawchuk, and Jack Stewart.
Awards and leadersEdit
- Steve "Boomer" Hawrysh Award MVP
- Ed Belfour Top Goaltender Trophy Top Goaltender
- Brian Kozak Award Top Defenceman
- Vince Leah Trophy Rookie of the Year
- Frank McKinnon Memorial Trophy Hockey Ability and Sportsmanship
- Muzz McPherson Award Coach of the Year
- Mike Ridley Trophy Scoring Champion
- MJHL Top Goal Scorers
- MJHL All-Star Teams
- MJHL All Rookie Team
- MJHL Playoff MVP
- CJHL Player of the Year (MJHL)
Timeline of teams in the MJHLEdit
- 1917 – The league is founded as the Winnipeg & District League
- 1924 – Elmwood Millionaires join league
- 1930 – Winnipeg Monarchs and Kenora Thistles join league
- 1931 – Winnipeg & District League is renamed the Manitoba Junior Hockey League
- 1931 – Elmwood Millionaires fold
- 1933 – Elmwood Maple Leafs join league
- 1934 – St. Boniface Seals join league
- 1935 – Woodhaven Maple Leafs join league
- 1935 – Selkirk Fisherman fold
- 1936 – Woodhaven Maple Leafs become the St. James Canadians
- 1938 – Brandon Wheat Kings become the Brandon Elks
- 1939 – Winnipeg Rangers and CUAC Blues join league
- 1939 – St. Boniface Seals become St. Boniface Athletics
- 1940 – Brandon Elks become the Brandon Wheat Kings
- 1940 – Kenora Thistles and Elmwood Maple Leafs fold
- 1942 – Portage Terriers and Wolseley Flyers join league
- 1943 – Wolseley Flyers fold
- 1945 – St. James Canadians become St. James Orioles
- 1945 – St. Boniface Athletics and CUAC Blues fold
- 1946 – St. James Orioles relocate to Winnipeg and become the Winnipeg Canadiens
- 1947 – Portage Terriers fold
- 1947 – Winnipeg Rangers become the Winnipeg Black Hawks
- 1952 – Winnipeg Black Hawks become the Winnipeg Barons
- 1952 – Winnipeg Canadians relocate to St. Boniface and become the St. Boniface Canadiens
- 1956 – Winnipeg Braves and new Winnipeg Rangers join league
- 1957 – Winnipeg Barons fold
- 1957 – Winnipeg Rangers relocate to Brandon and become the Brandon Rangers
- 1958 – Brandon Rangers relocate to Transcona and become the Transcona Rangers
- 1959 – Transcona Rangers return to Winnipeg and become the Winnipeg Rangers
- 1963 – Fort Frances Royals join league for one season
- 1964 – Brandon Wheat Kings leave to join SJHL
- 1964 – St. Boniface Canadiens relocate to Winnipeg and become the Winnipeg Warriors
- 1966 – Brandon Wheat Kings rejoin league
- 1966 – Winnipeg Braves become the St. James Braves
- 1966 – Selkirk Steelers join league
- 1967 – Brandon Wheat Kings leave to join WCHL
- 1967 – Selkirk Steelers leave to join CMJHL
- 1967 – St. James Braves become the new St. James Canadians
- 1967 – Winnipeg Rangers relocate to St. Boniface and become the St. Boniface Saints
- 1967 – Winnipeg Warriors relocate to Kildonan and become the West Kildonan North Stars
- 1968 – MJHL/CMJHL merger: Dauphin Kings and Kenora Muskies join league, Portage Terriers and Selkirk Steelers rejoin league
- 1973 – Brandon Travellers join league
- 1975 – Kenora Muskies become the Kenora Thistles
- 1975 – Thompson King Miners join league
- 1976 – West Kildonan North Stars become Kildonan North Stars
- 1976 – Winnipeg Monarchs become the Assiniboine Park Monarchs
- 1977 – Assiniboine Park Monarchs become the Fort Garry Blues
- 1978 – Thompson King Miners leave to join NJHL
- 1980 – Brandon Travellers fold
- 1980 – Winkler Flyers join league
- 1982 – Kenora Thistles fold
- 1984 – Fort Garry Blues become the Winnipeg South Blues
- 1984 – Thunder Bay Hornets join league
- 1985 – Steinbach Hawks join league
- 1986 – Thunder Bay Hornets fold
- 1988 – Southeast Thunderbirds join league
- 1988 – Steinbach Hawks fold
- 1989 – Neepawa Natives join league
- 1990 – Kildonan North Stars fold
- 1992 – Southeast Thunderbirds relocate to Sakgeeng and became the Southeast Blades
- 1996 – OCN Blizzard join league
- 1999 – Waywayseecappo Wolverines and Swan Valley Stampeders join league
- 2000 – St. Boniface Saints become the Winnipeg Saints
- 2003 – St. James Canadians take a one-year leave of absence and fold one year later
- 2007 – Southeast Blades relocate to Beausejour and become the Beausejour Blades
- 2009 – Beausejour Blades relocate to Steinbach and become the Steinbach Pistons
- 2010 – Winnipeg Saints relocate to St. Adolphe
- 2010 – Winnipeg South Blues become the Winnipeg Blues
- 2011 – Winnipeg Saints relocate to Winnipeg
- 2012 – Winnipeg Saints relocate to Virden and become the Virden Oil Capitals
- 2019 – Winnipeg Blues relocate to Oak Bluff
- 2020 – Winnipeg Freeze join league, playing out of Oak Bluff
- 2021 - Neepawa Natives become the Neepawa Titans
- 2021 - Winnipeg Freeze relocate to Winnipeg
List of MJHL seasonsEdit
- "Niverville awarded expansion franchise for 2022-23". MJHL. 2021-06-04.
- "MJHL announces 2021-22 season overview". MJHL. 2021-06-05.
- "MJHL Rule Changes for 2016-2017". SteinbachOnline.com. 2016-06-13.
- "MJHL Moves To One Division This Fall". PortageOnline.com. Retrieved 2014-06-11.
- "In the MJHL, all Addison teams will now make the playoffs". ManitobaHockeyNews.com. Retrieved 2014-03-18.
- "Western Canada Cup Scrapped". MyToba.ca. 2017-05-20.
- "Unity through diversity". CBC News. February 4, 2008.
- Beck, Dallis (January 9, 1979). ""Mr. Hockey" a member of Hall of Fame". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 58.
- Ferguson, Bob (2005). Who's Who in Canadian Sport, Volume 4. Markham, Ontario: Fitzhenry & Whiteside. p. 122. ISBN 1-55041-855-6.
- "Ten Junior Clubs to Play This Season". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 2, 1936. p. 17. ; "M.A.H.A. Executive Appoints Committee to Handle Matter". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 10, 1936. p. 16.
- Buss, Johnny (September 30, 1940). "Johnson Returned As M.A.H.A. Prexy". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 14.
- "M.A.H.A. Upholds Ruling of Special Committee". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 18, 1940. p. 16.
- "A's Look Good In North Debut". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. December 14, 1940. p. 24.
- "Junior Clubs Set On Inter-Change". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. October 23, 1944. p. 14. ; "Hannibal Re-elected M.A.H.A. Prexy". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. October 30, 1944. p. 14. ; "Junior Teams Rule On Transfers". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 6, 1944. p. 12.
- "North Juniors Issue Ultimatum; Jimmy Dunn Elected President". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. October 29, 1945. p. 22.
- "Five-team Circuit Is New Setup". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 5, 1945. p. 14.
- Allan, Tony (June 15, 1946). "One Man's Opinion". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 14.
- "St. James Out? Four-team Loop Looms". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. October 5, 1946. p. 18.
- Allan, Tony (September 30, 1946). "Jimmy Dunn Re-elected; Craig Out As Convenor". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 25.
- Buss, Johnny (October 14, 1946). "St. James Awarded Junior Berth". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 27.
- "Flin Flon Team in 'Toba Loop?". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. December 17, 1959. p. 26.
- Collins, Fred (April 17, 1961). "Jake Milford Likes MAHA Proposal". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 21.
- Collins, Fred (September 22, 1961). "Hind Accepts Junior Post". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 26.
- "Juniors Ordered To Change Back". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 23, 1961. p. 42.
- "MJHL zones city; hires Jimmy Dunn". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. May 16, 1964. p. 14.
- "Juniors revive trophy series". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. September 17, 1964. p. 46.
- "Open Sunday". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. October 23, 1964. p. 54.
- "MJHL waives bye into western final". Winnipeg Tribune. Winnipeg, Manitoba. January 25, 1965. p. 41.
- "Junior Hockey Unpredictable". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. November 2, 1965. p. 24.
- Collins, Fred (February 12, 1965). "Braves Zero In On Pennant". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 41.
- "MJHL Opens On Oct. 9". Brandon Sun. Brandon, Manitoba. August 31, 1966. p. 10.
- "Goodbye MJHL". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. October 25, 1966. p. 24.
- Beck, Dallis (January 9, 1979). ""Mr. Hockey" a member of Hall of Fame". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. p. 58.
- Greatness: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow - A History of the Portage Terriers
- "Terriers end memorable regular season with a win". Portage Daily Graphic. 2015-03-03.
- "Pistons stop Terriers' win streak". Brandon Sun. 2016-04-18.
- "Hazed and now no place to play". 2011-10-27.
- "MJHL announces 2020-21 Regular Season schedule". Manitoba Junior Hockey League. 2020-09-10.
- "Canadian Virtual War Memorial-Walter James Turnbull". Veterans Affairs Canada. Retrieved 2018-04-22.
- "Turnbull Trophy Undergoes Major Refurbishing". MJHL. 2018-04-20.
- "Hockey Canada statement in response to coronavirus (COVID-19)". Hockey Canada. March 12, 2020.
- "MJHL cancels remainder for the 2020-21 season". Discover Westman. February 12, 2021.
- "Goodbye MJHL". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. October 25, 1966. p. 24.