FREDERICTON (GNB) – New Brunswick and Nova Scotia have been selected to host the 2023 World Junior Ice Hockey Championship.

Russia was originally scheduled to host the tournament but the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) removed their hosting rights after the invasion of Ukraine.

“We are excited to have partnered with Nova Scotia to win the bid to serve as hosts,” said Premier Blaine Higgs. “This world event will showcase our province and our region, and we will provide an unforgettable experience for both New Brunswickers and those visiting. We look forward to hosting the players and their families.”

“Nova Scotia is thrilled to be selected to host the 2023 World Juniors – which will be the best tournament to date,” said Premier Tim Houston. “We are ready to roll out the welcome mat for the teams, their families and visiting fans, and I’ll be in the arena with thousands of Nova Scotians, cheering at each and every game.”

Moncton and Halifax will serve as the host cities for the tournament, to be played Dec. 26, 2022 to Jan. 5, 2023 at the Avenir Centre and at Scotiabank Centre.

“Sport has a unifying power, and hockey holds particular importance in cities like Moncton and Halifax,” said Moncton Mayor Dawn Arnold. “Coming out of a challenging two years, our region, hockey fans and players are ready to rally together to host the world and once again celebrate Atlantic Canada on the international stage.”

“The Moncton Wildcats are pleased to share our home arena, world-class hockey facilities and loyal fans with the best junior hockey players in the world,” said Robert K. Irving, president of the Moncton Wildcats. “Our organization was proud to support the bid and we look forward to a successful event.”

“ASM Global and the Avenir Centre are thrilled to be among the venues selected to host the 2023 World Junior Hockey Championship,” said Dave Saldanha, general manager of the Avenir Centre. “Along with our East Coast partners, we look forward to putting on a world-class event and creating some amazing memories.”

“It is an honour and a pleasure to be able to host the 2023 IIHF World Juniors with our colleagues in Nova Scotia,” said E. Todd Pye, president of Hockey New Brunswick. “Our strong partnership will enable us to deliver an outstanding event for all players, families and spectators who come to Moncton and Halifax.”