The 20-team Ontario Hockey League (OHL), known as the premiere development league for the NHL, is one of three major junior ice hockey leagues based in Canada and the United States that constitute the 60-team Canadian Hockey League (CHL).
The league is for players aged 16–21 and nearly 70% of the players competing in the National Hockey League throughout the 2017-18 season were alums of the CHL. In addition, 10 of the last 12 players that were picked 1st overall in the NHL Draft have come from the CHL consisting of Connor McDavid, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Taylor Hall, John Tavares, Steven Stamkos, Patrick Kane and Sidney Crosby. Other notable OHL alumni are Wayne Gretzky, Bobby Orr, Mickey Redmond, Brendan Shanahan, Steve Yzerman, PK Subban, Drew Doughty and Tyler Seguin. 1 in 4 players competing in the NHL during the 2017-18 season were alums of the OHL (See Info Graphic Here). Additionally, Flint Firebirds Forward Ty Dellandrea was selected by the Dallas Stars in the first round, 13th overall of the 2018 NHL Draft (Watch Video).
More than 250 scouts representing all 31 NHL clubs attended a Firebirds game in Flint throughout the 2017-18 season, an average of seven new scouts each home game.
For the player, all university education costs are paid for by the OHL team while playing in the OHL including tuition, books, compulsory fees and room and board. Then, Every OHL Player is eligible for a university scholarship from their respective team, administered through the league office, upon graduating from the OHL. The minimum scholarship benefit for graduating players is tuition, books and compulsory fees for each season played in the OHL toward an undergraduate university degree. Additionally, players are provided with the best equipment available at no cost to the player including: sticks, skates, shin pads, pants, gloves, elbow pads, shoulder pads, neck guard, helmet. goalie pads, goalie glove and blocker, goalie chest protector, goalie pants, goalie helmet, goalie sticks and all performance wear. (See the OHL’s Prospect Info page here)
The OHL has more than 550, or 80% of its games televised ever year through its broadcast partners Comcast 900/Xfinity, Rogers TV, TVCogeco, Eastlink, Shaw TV, Sportsnet and the NHL Network (See Broadcast Coverage Here). Recognized as a leader in television coverage, OHL fans in Ontario have the opportunity to add the “OHL Action Pak” to their cable television subscription to watch every game, home or away, on TV throughout the season, similar to the NHL Center Ice and MLB Extra Innings TV packages.
There are 20 teams in the OHL; 17 are based in Ontario, two teams in Michigan, the Flint Firebirds and Saginaw Spirit and one team in Pennsylvania, the Erie Otters.
Ontario Hockey League Clubs Map
For questions about the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) and the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), contact Flint Firebirds Director of Broadcasting & Communications, Dominic Hennig at firstname.lastname@example.org.