The Yorkton Terriers won’t be traveling to Warman for Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League action anytime soon.
The Warman SJHL committee has chosen not to seek an application to join the league after not receiving enough interest for season tickets and corporate support.
“They’re not applying for a franchise - not at this point of time, anyway,” said SJHL president Billy Chow to the StarPhoenix. “They’ve done their due diligence. They found that there is not enough support, both from the corporate and season-ticket sides, to pursue an SJHL team at this point.”
There is no shortage of signs that indicate the SJHL wouldn’t work in Warman. The reason junior teams in cities such as Yorkton, Humboldt, and Estevan thrive is because the community gets behind the organization and claims the club as “their team.” Warman doesn’t appear to have that mentality to rally around an SJHL club. Many of the people that live there work in Saskatoon and don’t really consider Warman their “town.” They more or so chose to live in Waman to save money on living expenses and possibly to get away from the city atmosphere. Not to mention, the Western Hockey League’s Saskatoon Blades are only a hop and a skip away. The 12 clubs currently in the SJHL don’t face this type of competition with all of them being at least 100km away from major junior cities.
Warman does, however, have a suitable junior A barn – the new Legends Arena, which is a multi-purpose facility. Their population of roughly 8,000 people is also much bigger than other SJHL communities such as Nipawin and La Ronge.
Warman has been without a junior hockey team since the Warman Valley Crusaders left the former North Saskatchewan Junior B Hockey League in 2004.