According to a news item on the American Hockey League’s official website (TheAHL.com), the 2022 AHL All-Star Classic has been “postponed” beyond 2022.
The event was originally scheduled for February 6 and 7, 2022 at Place Bell in Laval, Quebec and will not be held this season. The announcement was made by AHL President and CEO Scott Howson.
Howson said that the postponement was “due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.”
Howson was directly quoted as saying: “The Laval Rocket and Place Bell have done an outstanding job preparing to host our All-Star Classic festivities this year. But with the event only six weeks away and faced with ongoing challenges pertaining to health and safety, international travel, and group gatherings, the League and the Rocket organization feel it is in everybody’s best interests to postpone the event. We remain committed to bringing the All-Star Classic to Laval in the future.”
President of Sports and Entertainment at Groupe CH (Laval’s ownership), France Margaret Belanger added: “Postponing the All-Star Classic for a second year is disappointing, but unfortunately unavoidable in the circumstances. This is one of the most prestigious events in the AHL and we look forward to hosting this major event at Place Bell. We are very grateful to our fans and partners for their loyalty during this difficult time. We also want to thank the American Hockey League for their confidence and their collaboration on this project.”
This is the second straight year that the AHL has attempted to bring their All-Star Classic to Laval and the second straight year that COVID has wiped it out. The 2021 event was to be held in the same building but when the 20219-20 AHL season was ended early and the 2020-21 season needed to be readjusted, the 2021 All-Star Classic was a casualty.
The announcement of the cancelation of the 2021 Classic was made in August of 2020, and the 2022 game was immediately awarded to Laval as a make good from the AHL.
Time will tell if the third time is a charm or if the AHL or Laval push things down the road a bit and do not attempt to bring the game to the city next year.