July 21st, 2020
To our Associations, Coaches & Participants:
As the Michigan Amateur Hockey Association (MAHA) continues to navigate the disruption in hockey activity, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are also required to anticipate the potential impact it may have on the launch of our 2020-21 season. While we remain optimistic that a return to hockey activity is forthcoming, we must also proactively forecast potential adjustments in programming which may be necessary. Specifically, the current delays caused by COVID-19 may result in some adjustments to the 2020-21 Midget Split Season in Michigan.
As of this writing, the majority of the state of Michigan remains in Phase 4 of Governor Whitmer’s Michigan Safe Start Plan (with the exception of Regions 6 & 8 on the MERC map, which have advanced to Phase 5 and may return to on-ice activity). For those regions that remain in Phase 4, hockey activity sanctioned by MAHA and USA Hockey has been postponed until the Governor advances those regions into Phase 5 of per plan. As we quickly approach the annual dates and deadlines that shape our Midget Split Season, it appears inevitable that the start of this season will require an adjusted timeline. The MAHA Executive Board will be reviewing this timeline and providing follow-up direction to all teams and associations, based on the guidelines and updates provided by the State of Michigan.
In addition to the start of the Midget Split Season, we must also closely review the timeline for the season’s end. Based on the alignment of the MAHA and MHSAA timelines for post-season activity, there may be a potential conflict that would limit participating players’ ability to compete in both state tournaments. While MAHA wants to ensure that Michigan is properly represented at the USA Hockey National Championships, our ability to achieve this may be shaped through a very small window of opportunity for our Midget Split Season teams. Specifically, we may encounter a scenario where qualifying MAHA players may not be available due to ongoing participation in the MHSAA season. Once again, we are obligated to forewarn our registering teams and participants of these scenarios, as MAHA begins to explore alternative options for scheduling our Midget Split Season. MAHA will make every effort to accommodate all teams that elect to participate in the Midget Split Season.
Much like the rest of our state’s hockey activity, these considerations are driven by the unknowns that remain with the re-opening of Michigan. Nevertheless, the MAHA will continue to monitor the progress of the Michigan Safe Start Plan and provide applicable updates as they become available.
Once again, we thank you for your continued patience and support. We ask that you continue to take proper steps to remain safe and healthy, and we look forward to seeing you at the rinks again soon!
George Atkinson President
Jason Reynolds, Director of Operations & Marketing
Michigan Amateur Hockey Association