Despite the ongoing coronavirus crisis, the Ontario Reign will have a pro hockey season this year -- but it won't be in Ontario.
The Reign team has been approved for a provisional relocation for the 2020-21 season. Ontario, which is affiliated with the NHL's Los Angeles Kings, will play all home games at Toyota Sports Performance Center in El Segundo, where the squad has practiced since 2019.
“We are excited to play the 2020-21 season as the Ontario Reign continue to develop L.A. Kings prospects,” Ontario Reign President Darren Abbott said. “The decision to play at Toyota Sports Performance Center will minimize travel risk for our players while we are unable to play with fans in the building, and we look forward to returning to Toyota Arena, in front of our supporters, when it is deemed safe to do so.”
The AHL will operate with five divisions for the upcoming season, with the Reign a part of an eight-team Pacific Division. Ontario will be joined by Bakersfield, Colorado, Henderson, San Diego, San Jose, Stockton and Tucson.
“It is important our young players continue to develop and the Ontario Reign play a significant role in that process,” LA Kings President Luc Robitaille said. “We are prepared to do what is best to provide that opportunity while also ensuring a safe and healthy environment for our players and staff at the Toyota Sports Performance Center, where we will play our games this season.”
The Reign opened training camp on Jan. 12 with 23 players on its roster. All of the team's activities at the Toyota Sports Performance Center will be closed to the public until further notice.
More information regarding Ontario's regular season schedule and playoff format will be released at a later date. For more information, visit www.ontarioreign.com.