The IIHF tournament directorate has canceled the remainder of the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship after multiple countries had players test positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday.
— Bobby Margarita (@TSNBobMcKenzie) December 29, 2021
Wednesday’s first two scheduled games were forfeits after Team Czechia and Russia produced positive test results.
Defending Gold Medalists Team USA forfeited their second game of the tournament on Tuesday when two players tested positive for COVID-19.
“We’re extremely disappointed, especially for our players. We’re operating in an ever-changing landscape and that’s very challenging. We’ve followed the tournament protocol from the outset and will continue to do everything we can to ensure our players have the opportunity to compete at the World Junior Championship,” said U.S. national junior team general manager John Vanbiesbrouck, who was recently named GM of the men’s Olympic hockey team as well.
The cancellation comes on the heels of the IIHF’s decision late last week to cancel all events that started in January, including the women’s under-18 world championship, a decision that was heavily criticized.
The IIHF said the tournaments were cancelled because of the rapid spread of the Omicron variant.