(Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre / Jay Wallace Images)

Hockey fans of Victoria will have to hold onto their Royals hats just a littler bit longer.

The Western Hockey League announced on Tuesday that it will delay the start of their 2020-21 regular season, and following further consultation with health authorities in the region, the Board of Governors will meet in the new year to discuss potential start dates.

According to a release from the WHL, with the current health restrictions in place across Western Canada and the Pacific Northwest U.S., they are not in a position to start their season as planned on January 8th.

There has been no new potential start date revealed at this time.

In June, the league announced an optimistic start date of October 2nd, though that was later pushed to December 4th, then eventually January 8th.

“We continue to make every effort to get our season started, but our first priority has always been the health and safety of our players, and everyone associated with the WHL,” said WHL commissioner Ron Robison.

The Western Hockey League assures the public that they have developed a series of protocols in consultation with health authorities that are necessary to protect WHL players, staff, officials, and fans during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The WHL encompasses western Canada and the Pacific Northwest, and hosts 22 teams; 17 of which are Canadian.

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