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Rayside Balfour Canadians face off in season opener Sunday night

Defending West Division champs take on Timmins Rock in six-game series
The Rayside Balfour Canadians face off against the Timmins Rock Sunday in their season opener. (Supplied)

The Rayside Balfour Canadians kick off the 2020-21 season on Nov. 15.

The defending West Division champions face off against the Timmins Rock Jr. A team in Game 1 of a six-game series. Game time is 6:30 p.m.

The Canadians’ roster has been finalized and Canadians general manager Jeff Forsyth will see 11 players returning  from last year’s championship roster. 

Leading the way will be veteran forward Brady Maltais, who has  recently been named team captain. Other returnees include Mathieu Dokis-Dupuis, Nick DeGrazia,  Mitchell Martin, Oliver Smith, Gavin Brown, Avery Chisholm, Dylan Bertrand, Scott Siren and veteran  defenceman Joel Mongeon and goaltender David Bowen.

Forsyth has rounded out the roster with 11 new additions including forwards Owen Perela, Cole  Ambeault, Samuel Assinewai, MacKenzie Sedgewick, Jaxon Bedard, Bradley Oldroyd, Nick Faught and  Ethan Marois. 

They are joined by defencemen Michael Campbell and Wilson Farrow along with first-year goaltender Jake Marois. Half of the Rayside Balfour Canadians roster is made-up of local players. 

The games are based on no body contact, no fighting, no scrums and no goal celebration – as outlined by the Ontario Hockey Federation. If the game is tied at the end of regulation time, the game will be decided via a shoot-out (no overtime). NOJHL games in Sudbury are considered “closed events” with no public access. Only game staff and one player parent are able to attend.

Due to arena capacity restrictions, no spectators are permitted to attend games right now. Local hockey fans can watch the games live on

Canadians’ game announcer Thomas Mercier will provide live play-by-play coverage. 

Rayside’s six-game season-opener series against the Timmins Rock is set for the following dates: 

  • Sunday, Nov. 15, 6:30 p.m., Chelmsford Arena
  • Thursday, Nov. 19, 7 p.m., Chelmsford Arena
  • Saturday, Nov. 21, 8:30 p.m., MacIntyre Arena (or Iroquios Falls)
  • Sunday, Nov. 22, 8:30 p.m., MacIntyre Arena (or Iroquios Falls)
  • Thursday, Nov. 26, 7 p.m., Chelmsford Arena
  • Saturday, Nov. 28, 8:30 p.m., MacIntyre Arena (or Iroquios Falls)

The NOJHL schedules have only been approved until Nov. 30. December’s schedule will be announced when approved by the NOHA and health units.

The next four-week schedule will be confirmed by the league at a later date in November. There are currently eight teams actively playing: Rayside, Timmins, Hearst, Cochrane, Espanola, French River, Blind River and Soo TBirds.

Powassan and Kirkland Lake are waiting for arena approvals to begin playing games in their respective facilities. Soo Michigan Eagles are not participating at this point due to closed borders.