The Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) has awarded an expansion franchise to the Northern Alberta Xtreme (NAX) Athletics Group and community of Devon, AB for the 2024-25 season.  The AJHL franchise will play at a new rink currently under construction in the Dale Fisher Arena and scheduled to open in June 2024.

The facility will feature a regulation sized ice surface alongside a two-story hockey training facility that will be one of the best fully-integrated training facilities in Alberta.  Attached to the Dale Fisher Arena, the facility will provide world-class training and development opportunities for it’s athletes.  The NAX Training Centre is currently home to six NAX Hockey Academy teams and two elite hockey development programs. Additional information on NAX can be found at www.naxhockey.com

The partnership with NAX will provide an innovative and professionally run program with a suite of services available to it’s AJHL players, including performance trainers and therapists, extensive player and goalie coaching staffs, custom skate sharpening and modern training facilities.

“NAX is excited to bring Junior A hockey to the Town of Devon,” said Craig Kibblewhite. “The AJHL is the top sanctioned Junior A hockey league in Canada, and it is a great pathway for those players looking to move to the next level. The partnership between the Town of Devon and NAX is allowing us to operate out of a brand new arena with a state-of-the-art training facility, a dedicated dressing room, and an amazing atmosphere for the fans. These amenities, along with the integration with NAX and our dedicated coaches, trainers, skills development professionals, and staff, will help to attract, retain, and develop new and current athletes. NAX is dedicated to continuing with our inclusive and winning tradition that has been created through our CSSHL teams over the past decade.”

The NAX Athletics Group was previously part of the Whitecourt Wolverines ownership group.  The Alberta Junior Hockey League is in the process of evaluating new ownership opportunities to continue a successful AJHL program in the town of Whitecourt, AB.

“I would like to welcome the community of Devon to the Alberta Junior Hockey League and congratulate the Northern Alberta Xtreme (NAX) Athletics Group,” said AJHL Commissioner Ryan Bartoshyk. “The League welcomes the opportunity for the group to enhance their program through the addition of an AJHL Franchise and provide elite development for its Athletes and exposure for the entire AJHL.”

“The League is working diligently to ensure that the community of Whitecourt and Wolverines franchise maintains it’s status within our League and is in the position to provide a competitive program, embracing community stakeholders for the 2024-25 season,” added Bartoshyk.  “Thank you to the entire AJHL Board of Governors and Chairman Greg Wood for their commitment, patience and due diligence over the past four months.”

As part of a Special Members Meeting held on April 3rd, 2024, the AJHL Board of Governors also reviewed an expansion application from the community of Cold Lake, AB and the state-of-the-art Cold Lake Energy Centre.  The league will continue to work with the group on potential expansion for the 2025-26 AJHL season.

The Alberta Junior Hockey League will announce a new league structure and schedule format in May 2024.