About the WHL
The Western Hockey League started with just seven teams based in the provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta in 1966. The WHL now has representation in all four Western Canadian provinces and the U.S. States of Oregon and Washington. The WHL now consists of 22 member Clubs with 17 based in Western Canada and 5 in the U.S. Pacific Northwest.
The WHL is a member of the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) whose membership is comprised of the three major junior hockey leagues; the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) and the Western Hockey League (WHL). At the conclusion of each League’s playoffs, the CHL hosts the MasterCard Memorial Cup, a National Championship tournament involving each of the three League’s Champions and the tournament host.
Since its inception, the WHL has been regarded as one of the finest player development Leagues in the world and continues to not only be a leading supplier of talent to the NHL, but to Canada’s National teams at all levels as well as Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) hockey.
The WHL offers top young prospects in Western Canada and the U.S. the opportunity to reach their full potential both on and off the ice, by providing an ideal environment to develop as a hockey player while not compromising their academic goals. All WHL Clubs graduate 100% of their players from high school and provide Education Advisors and support programs to assist players with their academics. The WHL Player Experience also includes comprehensive support programs such as Red Cross RespectEd, WHL Drug, Alcohol and Gambling Awareness, Drug Education and Anti-Doping, WHL Counselling Services, and CHL Concussion Management Program. In addition, the WHL Scholarship provides players graduating from the League with the opportunity to attend the post-secondary institution or career-enhancing program of their choice with one year’s tuition, books and compulsory fees for each season played in the WHL provided by WHL Club Ownership.
The WHL Office is located in Calgary, Alberta and is responsible to administer all matters related to League operations. Under the direction of the WHL Commissioner, some of the WHL Office functions include game supervision, scheduling, League meetings, player drafts, WHL Scholarship administration, player transactions, player recruitment, finance, marketing, media relations, communications, and statistics.
The WHL is committed to remaining a world leader in the development of players, coaches and officials for the NHL, CIS and Hockey Canada while continuing to offer the finest player experience and academic opportunities. The WHL also continues to be recognized for a high standard of competition, fair play and integrity while playing an active role in communities, minor hockey programs and local charitable initiatives throughout the region.