Canadian International Hockey League
|Current season or competition:
2014–15 CIHL season
|Region(s)||Northeastern Ontario and Michigan|
|Recent Champions||Batchewana Attack (2014-15)|
The Canadian International Hockey League (CIHL) was a Canadian independent Junior ice hockey league based in Northern Ontario, Central Ontario, and the Greater Toronto Area. CIHL was an independent league.
The CIHL was officially announced on April 8, 2014 with the unveiling of its website. The league was started by Tim Clayden, owner of the Espanola Rivermen, a team that just finished their first year in the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League and then left.
In May 2014, the league was accepted into the Amateur Athletic Union's United Hockey Union. The AAU provides insurance and oversight to its leagues, but is not a recognized governing body of ice hockey by Hockey Canada or the International Ice Hockey Federation.
The league initially announced two other confirmed teams: the Bracebridge Phantoms and the Colborne Cramahe Hawks (formerly Bobcaygeon Bucks) from the Greater Metro Junior A Hockey League. A week after announcing Bracebridge as a team, the team decided to stay with the GMHL under new ownership.
The league then announced the following teams for its inaugural season: Barrie Stars, Batchewana Attack, Collingwood Ice, Greater Sudbury Royals, Milton Cobras and St. Charles Spirit. In early August it was announced that Barrie would not continue with the league.
On August 27, the CIHL officially announced the Toronto Junior Hockey Academy as a league member.
On October 4, 2014, the CIHL kicked off its inaugural hockey weekend. The first-ever puck drop took place in St. Charles, Ontario where the St. Charles Spirit hosted the Greater Sudbury Royals. The Spirit would win the first-ever CIHL game 5-3. That same day in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, the Batchewana Attack hosted the Espanola Rivermen, winning 6-2.
On November 10, 2014, the CIHL left the United Hockey Union and the AAU. In addition, the CIHL allowed its first American team into the league, the Kalkaska Rhinos. Within a week, the CIHL experienced an exodus of teams, seeing Colborne, Collingwood, Milton and Toronto leaving the league to form their own AAU-sanctioned World United Hockey League (WUHL). The St. Charles Spirit folded days later. The Collingwood Ice would also fold after playing nine games in the WUHL.
In late November, the CIHL announced the formation of the Markstay-Warren Spirit Warriors, a new team who would assume the St. Charles' schedule and win-loss record. After playing one game (losing 6-0), the Markstay-Warren Spirit Warriors joined the ever-growing list of former teams when they folded in order to send players to the Greater Sudbury Royals. This provided a boost to the winless Royals, who were also on the verge of folding. The Royals would fold in later January. In February, the Kalkaska Rhinos left the CIHL to become an independent team, leaving only the Espanola Riverman and the Batchewana Attack, putting the league's future in question.
In April 2015, the league decided against operating for a 2nd season.
|Batchewana Attack||Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario||Rankin Arena|
|Espanola Rivermen||Espanola, Ontario||Espanola Regional Recreational Complex|
Regular season champions
|2014–15||Batchewana Attack||Espanola Rivermen||4-0|
|Barrie Area Stars||Lefroy||Never played|
|Bracebridge Phantoms||Bracebridge||Never played|
|Colborne Cramahe Hawks||Colborne||2014||2014||Joined WUHL|
|Collingwood Ice||Collingwood||2014||2014||Joined WUHL|
|Greater Sudbury Royals||Capreol||2014||2015||Folded|
|Kalkaska Rhinos||Kalkaska, MI||2014||2015||Pulled Out, Independent|
|Milton Cobras||Milton||2014||2014||Joined WUHL|
|St. Charles Spirit||St. Charles||2014||2014||Folded|
|Markstay-Warren Spirit Warriors||Markstay-Warren||2014||2014||Folded|
|Toronto Junior Hockey Academy||Toronto||2014||2014||Joined WUHL|
- "Make way for the CIHL". Hockey News North. 26 March 2014.
- "CIHL moving forward". Hockey News North. 2 April 2014.
- "CIHL Gears Up For Final Team Approval". NorthcumberlandView.com. 31 May 2014.
- "New beginning for the team formerly known as Phantoms". Bracebridge Examiner. 2 April 2014.
- "CIHL Barrie HTI Stars Headed to GMHL for the 2014-15 Season". Junior Hockey Network. 3 August 2014.
- "CIHL Is The Latest To Leave AAU – UHU Has Two Members For Now". The Junior Hockey News. 10 November 2014.
- "Kalkaska Rhinos join CIHL". Traverse City Record-Eagle. 10 November 2014.