Roaming The Rinks

One hockey fan's journey to the arenas of North America

Plus/Minus Arena Report:  2017-2018 Major Junior

August 24, 2017

Hello hockey fans!  We're back with another update for this season's Plus/Minus Arena Report.  We want to keep you up to speed again this season on arena and franchise changes in the world of North American college, pro, and junior hockey.  

Hockey season will be kicking off soon, and this time we will look at major junior hockey in the CHL as well as the USHL. Yes, we know the USHL is not technically major junior, but will group it together with the 3 CHL leagues as it is the premier junior hockey league in the U.S.  Take a look at what is happening as far as arena and team changes as well as alternate venue and neutral site contests so you can make the most of your hockey travels, and maybe have the chance to attend a game in a place that you hadn't thought about before. 

QMJHL:  Even

In the Q things will stay the same this upcoming season with the same 18 clubs remaining in the same arenas as last season.  Changes are on the horizon however as a new arena in Moncton, New Brunswick, known as the Moncton Downtown Centre, is scheduled to open in the Fall of 2018. Fans making a trip to the Maritimes this season may want to take the opportunity to see the Moncton Wildcats at Moncton Coliseum while they still have the chance.

Moncton Coliseum is scheduled to be replaced as the home of the Moncton Wildcats starting with the 2018-2019 season. Photo Roaming The Rinks .com  

OHL:  Even

In the Ontario League things will stay the same this season with all 20 teams remaining in their same locations.  The OHL provides an excellent quality of hockey, and will continue to be a premier league.

Bonus Plus

Canadian Tire Centre     Kanata, Ontario.     The Ottawa 67's played 2 complete seasons here at the home of the Ottawa Senators, but will have a single contest here, at 10:30 AM on November 1st against Kingston, for those wanting to attend a NHL arena without the NHL arena type hassle.  

The Ottawa 67's return to Canadian Tire Centre to play a game on NHL ice on November 1st.  Photo Roaming The Rinks .com

WHL:  Even

Out West a number of new arenas have been built over the last few year, but things will remain status quo this year, with all 22 teams remaining in the same 23 arenas (Portland has 2) as last season.  The Dub is quality hockey and draws big crowds in many markets.

USHL:  Minus

Alliant Energy Center     Madison, Wisconsin.     The Madison Capitols brought the USHL back to town in 2014 for the first time since the mid- 90's.  This arena, known better as the Dan County Coliseum, is a bit too large for the USHL with its 10,000 plus seats, thus finding the Capitols moving to a new home this season.


Hartmeyer Ice Arena     Madison, Wisconsin.     The Capitols new home is a 55 year old building that was home of the Wisconsin Badgers back in the day, was the home of the USHL team that used to play in Madison in the 1980's and 90's, and more recently hosted the NA3HL's Wisconsin Whalers.  This 3500 seater is reportedly full of character and charm and should be a good fit for the USHL.

Other then the venue switch in Madison the USHL will plug along with 17 clubs in their same venues, and continue to have a strong Midwestern presence.

Alliant Energy Center in Madison, better known as Dane County Coliseum will  be without a major hockey tenant with the Madison Capitols moving to a different venue.  Photo Bill Rudolph for Roaming The Rinks .com 

That will wrap things up for this edition of the Plus/Minus Arena Report.  We will have updates on pro and college hockey before their respective seasons start.  Although there is not a lot of shuffling from an arena standpoint in major junior hockey this season there are a few chances to catch teams at different venues.  Of course, many of the existing arenas at this level of hockey are already must-see venues, so get out there can catch a game or several at some different arenas this season.  Safe travels!