AHL cancels remainder of season due to coronavirus pandemic

The American Hockey League canceled the remainder of the 2019-20 season, including the playoffs, league president Dave Andrews announced Monday.

The decision follows a vote by the league's board of governors on Friday. The AHL is the NHL's top minor league affiliate, and it followed the NHL's decision to suspend play on March 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"After a lengthy review process, the American Hockey League has determined that the resumption and completion of the 2019-20 season is not feasible in light of current conditions," the AHL said in a statement. "The League's operational focus has turned toward actively preparing for the 2020-21 season. We are very grateful to the National Hockey League and its teams for their support and leadership in navigating through the challenges faced over the past two months."

The AHL's standings that were frozen on March 12 will be sorted by points percentage and considered final and official. The Milwaukee Admirals, the Nashville Predators' AHL affiliate, led the league in points percentage.

The AHL is a gate-driven league, and unlike the NHL doesn't get significant revenue from television contracts. This will mark the first time since the AHL was formed in 1936-37 that the Calder Cup will not be awarded.

Since the NHL is still aiming to complete its season this summer or fall, teams are preparing to carry several extra players from their AHL teams as emergency replacements.

Typically, once the AHL's season is done, recalls from affiliates are unlimited for NHL clubs. The NHL's 23-man roster limit doesn't apply after trade deadline.