List Of Hockey Leagues Both Professional And Amateur in Canada

List Of Hockey Leagues
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This is a list of ice hockey leagues, both professional and amateur, from around the world; parentheses denote the year of establishment and, where applicable, the year of disestablishment.

North America

Major professional

  • National Hockey League (1917) (Canada; United States)

Minor professional

  • American Hockey League (1936) (United States; Canada)
  • ECHL (1988 as East Coast Hockey League) (United States; Canada)
  • Southern Professional Hockey League (2004) (United States)
  • Federal Hockey League (2010) (United States; Canada)

Semi-Pro

  • Liga Mexicana Élite (1989 as Mexican National Championship) (Mexico)
  • Ligue Nord-Américaine de Hockey (1996 as Quebec Semi-Pro Hockey League) (Canada)

Junior

  • Junior ice hockey

Major junior

  • Canadian Hockey League (governing authority)
  • Ontario Hockey League (1933) (Canada; United States)
  • Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (1969) (Canada)
  • Western Hockey League (1966) (Canada; United States)

Junior A

Hockey Canada junior A leagues

  • Canadian Junior Hockey League (governing authority)
  • Alberta Junior Hockey League
  • British Columbia Hockey League
  • Central Canada Hockey League
  • Quebec Junior Hockey League
  • Manitoba Junior Hockey League
  • Maritime Junior A Hockey League (1967 as Metro Valley Junior Hockey League; became a junior A league in 1977)
  • Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League
  • Ontario Junior Hockey League
  • Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League
  • Superior International Junior Hockey League

USA Hockey junior leagues

Tier I

  • United States Hockey League (1979)

Tier II

  • North American Hockey League (1975)

Tier III

  • Eastern Hockey League (Premier and 19U Elite) (2013) – formerly the Atlantic Junior Hockey League (2003)
  • North American 3 Hockey League (1970) – formerly the Central States Hockey League

United Hockey Union (AAU) junior leagues

  • Canadian Premier Junior Hockey League (2016)
  • Western States Hockey League (1994) – currently classified as Tier II by the UHU.
  • Western Provinces Hockey Association (2018) – A Canadian division of the WSHL

Independent junior leagues

  • Greater Metro Junior A Hockey League (2006)
  • Manitoba Major Junior Hockey League (1970) – sanctioned by Hockey Manitoba
  • United States Premier Hockey League (NCDC, Premier, and Elite) (2013) was formerly a Tier III USA Hockey junior league.
  • The National Collegiate Development Conference (NCDC) was initially designed to be the USPHL’s Tier II USA Hockey junior league but was denied sanctioning which resulted in the entire junior league operating independently in 2017.

Junior B

Hockey Canada junior B leagues

  • Calgary Junior Hockey League
  • Capital Junior Hockey League
  • Central Canada Hockey League Tier 2 formerly the Eastern Ontario Junior B Hockey League
  • Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League (OHA)
  • Heritage Junior B Hockey League
  • Island Junior Hockey League
  • Keystone Junior Hockey League formerly the Manitoba Junior B Hockey League
  • Kootenay International Junior Hockey League
  • Lakehead Junior Hockey League formerly the Thunder Bay Junior B Hockey League
  • Ligue de Hockey de La Capitale 
  • Ligue de Hockey Chaudière-Appalaches Junior AA 
  • Ligue de Hockey Estrie-Mauricie Junior AA 
  • Ligue de Hockey Lac St. Louis Junior AA 
  • Ligue de Hockey Laurentides-Lanaudière Junior AA
  • Ligue de Hockey Métropolitaine Junior AA  formerly the Richelieu Junior AA Hockey League
  • Ligue de Hockey Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean Junior AA 
  • New Brunswick Junior B Hockey League
  • North Eastern Alberta Junior B Hockey League
  • North West Junior Hockey League
  • Nova Scotia Junior Hockey League
  • Pacific Junior Hockey League
  • Prairie Junior Hockey League formerly the South Saskatchewan Junior B Hockey League, merged with North Saskatchewan Junior B Hockey League
  • St. John’s Junior Hockey League
  • Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League

Junior C

Hockey Canada junior C leagues

  • Calgary Junior C Hockey League
  • Hanover Tache Junior Hockey League
  • Ligue de Hockey Junior A Bois-Francs 
  • Ligue de Hockey Junior A Rive-Sud 
  • Ligue Interzone de hockey mineur BC Rive Nord (Junior A)
  • National Capital Junior Hockey League formerly the Eastern Ontario Junior C Hockey League
  • New Brunswick Junior B Hockey League
  • Noralta Junior Hockey League
  • Nova Scotia Junior C Hockey League
  • Prince Edward Island Junior C Hockey League formerly the Prince Edward Island Minor Junior Hockey League
  • Provincial Junior Hockey League (OHA) 2016-17 – Merging of the 8 Southern Ontario’s Jr. C Leagues
  • Qu’Appelle Valley Junior C Hockey League formerly the Saskatchewan Junior C Hockey League

Junior D

  • Ligue Interzone de hockey mineur BC Rive Nord (Junior B) (Canada) 

College

U Sports hockey (Canada)

  • U Sports (Canada, varsity)
  • Atlantic University Sport
  • Canada West Universities Athletic Association
  • Ontario University Athletics
  • Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec
  • Alberta Colleges Athletics Conference
  • British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League

NCAA hockey (United States)

National Collegiate Athletic Association (United States, varsity)

Division I

  • Atlantic Hockey (men only)
  • Big Ten (men only)
  • College Hockey America (women only)
  • ECAC Hockey (both sexes)
  • Hockey East (both sexes)
  • National Collegiate Hockey Conference (men only)
  • Western Collegiate Hockey Association (both sexes)

Division II

  • Northeast-10

Division III

  • Commonwealth Coast Conference
  • Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference
  • Middle Atlantic Conference
  • Midwest Collegiate Hockey Association
  • Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
  • New England Hockey Conference
  • Northern Collegiate Hockey Association
  • New England Small College Athletic Conference
  • State University of New York Athletic Conference
  • Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference

NAIA hockey (United States)

  • National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (United States, varsity)
  • Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC)

ACHA hockey (United States and Canada)

American Collegiate Hockey Association (United States; Canada)

Men’s Division 1

  • Central States Collegiate Hockey League (CSCHL)
  • College Hockey Mid-America (CHMA)
  • Eastern Collegiate Hockey Association (ECHA)
  • Eastern States Collegiate Hockey League (ESCHL)
  • Great Lakes Collegiate Hockey League (GLCHL)
  • Northeast Collegiate Hockey League (NECHL)
  • Western Collegiate Hockey League (WCHL)

Men’s Division 2

  • Colonial States College Hockey Conference (CSCHC)
  • Atlantic Coast Collegiate Hockey League (ACCHL)
  • Great Midwest Hockey League (GMHL)
  • Great Northeast Collegiate Hockey Conference (GNCHC)
  • Mid-American Collegiate Hockey Association (MACHA) (Gold division)
  • Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Hockey Association (MACHA)
  • Mountain West Collegiate Hockey League (MWCHL)
  • Northeast Collegiate Hockey Association (NECHA)
  • Pacific 8 Intercollegiate Hockey Conference (PAC-8)
  • Super East Collegiate Hockey League (SECHL)
  • Tri-State Collegiate Hockey League (TSCHL)
  • West Coast Hockey Conference (WCHC)
  • Western Collegiate Club Hockey Association (WCCHA)

Men’s Division 3

  • Blue Ridge Hockey Conference (BRHC)
  • College Hockey Association (CHA) (Contains Non-ACHA members)
  • College Hockey East (CHE)
  • Delaware Valley Collegiate Hockey Conference (DVCHC)
  • Empire Collegiate Hockey Conference (ECHC)
  • Mason-Dixon Collegiate Hockey Association (MDCHA)
  • Metropolitan Collegiate Hockey Conference (MCHC) (Contains Non-ACHA members)
  • Michigan Collegiate Hockey Conference (MCHC)
  • Mid-American Collegiate Hockey Association (MACHA) (Silver division)
  • Indiana Collegiate Hockey Conference (ICHC)
  • North Central Collegiate Hockey Association (NCCHA)
  • South Eastern Collegiate Hockey Conference (SECHC)
  • Southern Collegiate Hockey Conference (SCHC)
  • Pacific Collegiate Hockey Association (PCHA)
  • Upstate New York Club Hockey League (UNYCHL)

Women’s Division 1

  • Central Collegiate Women’s Hockey Association (CCWHA)
  • Eastern Collegiate Women’s Hockey League (ECWHL)
  • Western Women’s Collegiate Hockey League (WWCHL)
  • Delaware Valley Collegiate Hockey Conference (DVCHC Women’s)

Women’s

  • American Women’s Senior Hockey Championship (1977-)
  • National Women’s Hockey League (2015)
  • Canadian Women’s Hockey League (2007)
  • NCAA Division I Women’s Ice Hockey Championship (2000)
  • NCAA Division III Women’s Ice Hockey Tournament
  • U Sport women’s ice hockey championship (1998)
  • Junior Women’s Hockey League (2007)
  • Ligue de Hockey Universitaire Féminin (1999)
  • Mid-Atlantic Women’s Hockey League (1975)
  • Provincial Women’s Hockey League (2004)

Senior

Sanctioned by Hockey Canada or USA Hockey

Canada

  • Big 6 Hockey League (Saskatchewan Sr. AAA)
  • Allan Cup Hockey West (Alberta Sr. AAA) formerly the Chinook Hockey League
  • Highway Hockey League (Saskatchewan Sr. AAA)
  • Allan Cup Hockey (Ontario Sr. AAA) (1953) formerly Major League Hockey
  • North Peace Hockey League (Alberta Sr. AAA)
  • WOAA Senior AA Hockey League (Ontario Sr. AA and A) (1948) formerly the Western Ontario Athletic Association Senior Hockey League

United States

  • Great Lakes Hockey League (1937)
  • Mountain West Hockey League (2012)

Former leagues

  • All-American Hockey League (1987–1988)
  • All-American Hockey League (2008–2011)
  • America East Hockey League (2005–2008)
  • Amateur Hockey Association of Canada (1886–1898)
  • American Amateur Hockey League (1896–1917)
  • American Hockey Association (1926–1942)
  • Atlantic Coast Hockey League (1981–87) (1981–1987)
  • Atlantic Coast Hockey League (2002–2003)
  • California Hockey League (1928–1933)
  • California Hockey League (1957–1963)
  • Canadian Amateur Hockey League (1899–1905)
  • Canadian-American Hockey League (1926–1936)
  • Canadian Elite Hockey League (2005–2006)
  • Canadian Hockey Association (1909–1910)
  • Canadian Independent Junior Hockey League (2014) (folded before playing any games)
  • Canadian International Hockey League (2014) – played one season
  • Central Ontario Junior C Hockey League – (1970–2016) Became Orr Division of the PJHL
  • Canadian Professional Hockey League (1926–1930)
  • Central Collegiate Hockey Association (NCAA Division I, 1971–2013)
  • Central Hockey League (1963–1984)
  • Central Hockey League (1992–2014) (United States; Canada)
  • Central Ontario Hockey League (Unknown–1980)
  • Central Ontario Women’s Hockey League (1992–1998)
  • Central West Junior Hockey League (relegated from Jr B 2014 and became inactive)
  • Canadian Women’s National Championship (1981-2009)
  • College Hockey America men’s division (NCAA Division I, 1999–2010; conference remains in operation as a women’s hockey league)
  • Colored Hockey League (1895–1925)
  • Continental Elite Hockey League (2001–2004)
  • Continental Hockey League (1972–1987)–became All-American Hockey League
  • Eastern Amateur Hockey League (1933–1934, 1935–1948, 1949–1953)
  • Eastern Canada Amateur Hockey Association (1905–1909)
  • Eastern Canada Amateur Hockey League (1923–?)
  • Eastern Hockey League (1934–1935, 1954–1973, 1978-1981)
  • Eastern Junior Hockey League (1993–2013) – Some split from the league to form the United States Premier Hockey League and the remaining teams joined the Eastern Hockey League
  • Eastern Junior B Hockey League (1951–1972)
  • Eastern Ontario Senior Hockey League (2003–2008)
  • Eastern Professional Hockey League (2008–2009)
  • Eastern Professional Hockey League (1914–1915, 1959–1963)
  • Eastern States Hockey League (2003–2013) formerly the Continental Hockey Association 2003–2011

League Continues

  • EJHL South (2006–2013) formerly the Southeastern Junior Hockey League, affiliated with the Eastern Junior Hockey League from 2011–2013 before merging with the United States Premier Hockey League as the Elite Division
  • Empire Junior Hockey League (–2013) – Merged with the United States Premier Hockey League as the Empire Division
  • Empire B Junior C Hockey League – (1989-2016) Became Tod Division of the PJHL
  • Federal Amateur Hockey League (1904–1909)
  • Georgian Mid-Ontario Junior C Hockey League Became the Carruthers Division of the PJHL
  • Global Hockey League (DNP, 1990)
  • Great Lakes Junior Hockey League (2008-2012)
  • Great Lakes Junior C Hockey League – (1968-2016) Became Bill Stobbs Division of the PJHL
  • Great West Hockey Conference (NCAA Division I, 1985–1988)
  • Gulf Coast Hockey League (2001–2002)
  • International-American Hockey League (1936–1941)-became American Hockey League
  • International Independent Hockey League (2003)
  • International Hockey League (1929–36)
  • International Hockey League (1945–2001)
  • International Professional Hockey League (1904–1907)
  • Interprovincial Hockey Union (1910-1914)
  • Interprovincial Professional Hockey League (1910–1911)
  • Ligue Centrale de Hockey (LCH) (1978–2008)
  • Ligue de Hockey Junior de Montréal
  • Major Intermediate A Hockey League (1978–1983)
  • Manitoba Hockey Association (1907–1909) formerly the Manitoba Professional Hockey League and the Manitoba Hockey League
  • Maritime Major Hockey League (1950–1954)
  • Maritime Professional Hockey League (1911–1914)
  • Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (NCAA Division I, 1997–2003; conference remains in operation as an all-sports league without ice hockey)
  • Metro Junior A Hockey League (1991–1998) merged with the Ontario Provincial Junior A Hockey League
  • Metropolitan Junior Hockey League (1966–2017) played last season as the North American 3 Atlantic Hockey League (2016–17) and the remaining teams joined the Eastern Hockey League
  • Mid-Atlantic Hockey League (2007–2008)
  • Midwest Junior Hockey League (2012-2015) merged with the United States Premier Hockey League
  • Midwestern Junior C Hockey League (2013-2016) Became Pat Doherty Division of the PJHL
  • Minnesota Junior Hockey League (1974-2015) merged with the United States Premier Hockey League

Continued 

  • National College Prospects Hockey League (2016–2017) – Folded after one season and was AAU-sanctioned.
  • National Hockey Association (1909–1917)
  • National Women’s Hockey League (1999-2007)
  • New York-Penn Major Hockey League (1973 to 1979)
  • Niagara & District Junior C Hockey League – (1974-2016) Became Bloomfield Division of the PJHL
  • North American 3 Eastern Hockey League (2014–2016) formerly the Northern States Hockey League (2012–2014) – merged with North American 3 Hockey League
  • North American Hockey League (1973–1977)
  • North Eastern Hockey League (2003–2008)
  • North of Superior Junior B Hockey League (1996-2004) (Canada)
  • North West Hockey League (1933–1936)
  • Northern Junior Hockey League (2008–2010) (2008 as United Junior Hockey League)
  • Northern Pacific Hockey League (2000–2016) – folded and the remaining teams joined the United States Premier Hockey League
  • Northern States Junior Hockey League (2012–2014) – became the North American 3 Eastern Hockey League
  • Northwest Junior Hockey League (Manitoba) (1992-2004) (Canada)
  • Ontario Professional Hockey League (1907–1911, 1930–1931)
  • Original Stars Hockey League (2004)
  • Ottawa City Hockey League (1890–1957)
  • Pacific Coast Hockey Association (1911–1924)
  • Pacific Coast Hockey League (1928–1931, 1936–1941, 1945–1952)
  • Pacific Junior A Hockey League (1971–1979) (Canada)
  • Pacific Hockey League (1977–1979)
  • Pacific Hockey League (1994–1995)
  • Prairie Hockey League (1926–1928)
  • Quebec Hockey League (1952–1959)
  • Quebec Senior Hockey League (1945–1952)
  • Rocky Mountain Junior Hockey League aka Peace Cariboo Junior Hockey League (1975-1999) (British Columbia, Canada)
  • Rocky Mountain Junior Hockey League (2015–2018)
  • South East Hockey League (2003–2004)
  • Southern Elite Hockey League (1998–2000)
  • Southern Hockey League (1973–1977)
  • Southern Hockey League (1995–1996)
  • Southern Ontario Junior A Hockey League (1972–1976) merged with the Ontario Provincial Junior A Hockey League
  • Southern Ontario Junior Hockey League (1960–2016) Became Yeck Division of the PJHL
  • Southwest Hockey League (1975–1977)
  • Sunshine Hockey League (1992–1995)
  • Tri-State Hockey League (1932–1933)
  • Tri-State League (NCAA Division I, 1950–1972)
  • Tropical Hockey League (1938–1939)
  • United Hockey League (1991 as Colonial Hockey League, also known as International Hockey League) (1991-2010)

Additional League 

  • United States Hockey League (1945–1951)
  • Western Canada Hockey League (professional) (1921–1925)
  • Western Canada Hockey League (minor pro) (1932–1933)
  • Western Canada Senior Hockey League (1945–1951)
  • Western Ontario Junior C Hockey League (1966-2016) formerly the Western Junior C Hockey League, the Central Junior “C” Hockey League, and the Grey-Bruce Junior “C” Hockey League; Became the Pollock Division of the PJHL
  • West Coast Hockey League (1995–2003)
  • Western Canada Hockey League (1925 as Western Hockey League) (1921–1926)
  • Western Hockey League (1952–1974)
  • Western International Hockey League (1946–1962, 1963–1988)
  • Western Professional Hockey League (1996–2001)
  • Western Women’s Hockey League (2004)
  • World Hockey Association (1972–1979)
  • World Hockey Association 2 (2003–2004)
  • World United Hockey League (2014–2015)
  • WHA Junior Hockey League (2006–2008)

Conclusion 

The landscape of ice hockey leagues around the world is vast and diverse, ranging from major professional organizations like the National Hockey League (NHL) to various levels of amateur and junior leagues spanning North America, Europe, and beyond.

 The rich history of these leagues reflects the global popularity and enduring legacy of ice hockey as a sport.

From the oldest professional league, the NHL established in 1917, to the emergence of women’s leagues like the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) and collegiate competitions such as the NCAA Division I Women’s Ice Hockey Championship, the sport continues to thrive across different levels and demographics. 

FAQs About Ice Hockey Leagues

  1. What is the oldest professional ice hockey league?
  • The National Hockey League (NHL) is the oldest professional ice hockey league, established in 1917.
  1. What are some notable junior hockey leagues in Canada?
  • Major junior leagues include the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL), and Western Hockey League (WHL).
  • Junior A leagues under Hockey Canada include the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL), British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL), and more.
  1. Are there any women’s ice hockey leagues?
  • Yes, there are several women’s ice hockey leagues globally, including the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) and the Canadian Women’s Hockey League (CWHL).
  1. What are some prominent European ice hockey leagues?
  • European leagues include the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) in Russia, the Swedish Hockey League (SHL), the Finnish Liiga, and the Czech Extraliga, among others.
  1. Is there a professional ice hockey league in Asia?
  • Yes, the Asia League Ice Hockey (ALIH) includes teams from China, Japan, South Korea, and Russia. It is the top professional ice hockey league in Asia.