For a third straight year the Little Native Hockey League (LNHL) tournament has been cancelled.

Nipissing First Nation (NFN) has decided to cancel the March event in response to the surge in COVID-19 activity across the province resulting from the highly transmissible Omicron variant. 

“The return to modified Step 2 measures, including restrictions on recreational facilities and gatherings, as well as limited testing capacity and data reporting due to recent changes in provincial guidelines, signals that we are not moving in the right direction,” states a release.

“While this isn’t the kind of three-peat anyone aspires to, the decision to cancel the tournament for the third year in a row was made entirely out of concern for the health and safety of First Nation communities across

Ontario, especially those unequipped to deal with increased demands on already very limited resources,” says NFN Chief Scott McLeod.

“Although we remain hopeful that the situation will improve in the coming months, this pandemic continues to teach us that we can’t predict what will come next,” he adds.  “Holding a huge hockey tournament amidst an ongoing global pandemic is not a risk that Nipissing First Nation is willing or prepared to take.” 

NFN’s Chief and Council will discuss the possibility of Nipissing hosting the LNHL tournament at a later date, however no decision has been made at this time.

The event was scheduled to take place in Mississauga.