The NESHL completed its last games of the 2015-2016 season on March 5th and 6th, 2016 in Exeter, NH and there were some very exciting games throughout the weekend, and season for that matter. It is the only weekend in our season where we have all the league’s teams in attendance and this affords everyone the opportunity to interact and talk hockey amongst each other. We had a good crowd watching the games and I received email and comments from people who were there watching sled hockey for the first time and were amazed at the intensity and skill of our games and players.

This season we increased the number of games played by each Adult A team to 20. We also added the Bennett Blazers to the Division bringing our total number of teams to 7. The USA Warriors dominated the Division from the start of the season to the end followed closely by the Northeast Passage Wildcats. The Warriors continued their streak into our last weekend taking home not only the NESHL Adult A Championship trophy but the Sports4Life Sled Hockey Classic trophy for the Division. The NJ Freeze finished their season strong climbing in the standings to finish at number three, the Philadelphia Flyers came in fourth, and the NY Rangers in fifth. The Gaylord Wolfpack also finished their season strong coming in sixth place followed by the Bennett Blazers rounding out our Adult A Final Standings.

The Adult B Division also had some changes from the previous season. We added one new team, the New England Warriors from Maine, and increased the number of games each team played from 8 to 12. Similar to the A Division the VT Sledcats dominated the B Division from start to finish. The Sledcats got to take home the new NESHL B Division Championship trophy and the Sports4Life Sled Hockey Classic trophy last month. The Western MA Knights came in second, the New England Warriors completing their inaugural season came in third, and the Northeast Passage Wildcats came in fourth.

Planning for the 2016-2017 Season has been underway for quite a while now and we have some exciting changes in store already. First off we will be adding two new teams to each Division! In the Adult A Division the Pittsburgh Mighty Penguins and Ohio United teams will be joining us. The Adult B Division will be joined by the Long Island RoughRiders and the Boston Shamrocks. This will bring the A Division up to 9 teams and the B Division to 6. We will have well over 200 athletes in our league and these new changes will make us the largest, and oldest, Adult Sled Hockey league in the Country!

We will also be introducing our first Playoff structure/games for March 2017 in the Adult A Division. The top 4 teams in the Standings after our February games will compete for the Adult A Division Championship in March. The remaining 5 teams in the standings will compete for an Adult A Tier II Championship.

The Adult B Division teams will play one more game going from 12 to 13 for the 2016-2017 Season. The Regular Season will start in October and end in February with each team playing 10 games. In March we’ll have a similar playoff structure as we did this season with each team playing 3 games over two days.

Those are some quick highlights of what is in store for next season. We’ll continue to look, and solicit, for ways in which we can make the game more exciting for our teams and players so feel free to let us know your suggestions.

Finally, Thanks to all of our players, coaches, team managers, volunteers, Sponsors and Partners, League Officers, and NESHL Board for a great 2015-2016 Season! I hope everyone enjoys their summer and I look forward to seeing all of you next season!

Hello everyone! I want to first wish you Happy Holidays and an early Happy New Year! Please enjoy yourself, be safe, and I want to see you all back in action come January!

During the break in our season this year, the NESHL’s Board has decided to update two of our League Rules. Typically we do not make rule changes during our season but for these we felt they were important enough to act on. The NESHL Rules on our website are now updated and available for download. Please make sure you review them before your next NESHL game as these changes are for all teams and divisions.

First, we removed NESHL Rule 8.16 which covered Hits above a players shoulder (high hits, checks to the head, etc. We removed it as the penalty it assessed was one which was less than USA Hockey assesses. (They assess a Minor and Misconduct at a minimum and we only assessed a Minor.) We recognize this as a very serious offense and it should be penalized accordingly. With the removal of this rule it will default our league to USA Hockey Rule 620, Head Contact, and Referee’s will now assess at least a Minor and Misconduct to any player caught hitting another above the shoulders.

In case you were interested in what USA Hockey Rule 620 is it reads as follows:

  1. A minor plus a misconduct or major plus a game misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player who contacts an opponent in the head, face or neck, including with the stick or any part of the player’s body or equipment.
  2. A major plus a game misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player who injures an opponent as a result of head contact or who intentionally or recklessly contacts an opponent in the head, face or neck.
  3. A match penalty for attempt to injure or deliberate injury to an opponent may also be assessed for head contact.

The second change updated Rule 4.6, Penalty Times. We added Misconduct and the time assessed as 6.5 minutes. This was missing from our Rules.

If you have any additional questions regarding these Rule changes please see your Team’s Board Representative for assistance.

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Mike Ciavarro
Commissioner, NESHL

Simsbury, C.T - The Northeast Sled Hockey League is set to host the annual “Legacy Sled Hockey Classic Championship” at The Rinks at Exeter in Exeter, N.H. during the weekend of March 6-8, 2015. This exciting tournament will feature teams that include male and female players with disabilities of all ages, including past and present Paralympic athletes and disabled veterans.

Sled Hockey teams from eight states will be competing including teams from New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Vermont. Teams will be playing for regular season standings (trophies for A and B divisions will be awarded) and the top six teams in the region will compete for the Legacy Sled Hockey Classic Championship.

The opening ceremony will take place on Saturday, March 7at 9:40AM at The Rinks at Exeter. Games will continue throughout the weekend. Admission is free and spectators are encouraged to attend.

“We have had an exciting season and teams will be jockeying for their final positions in the standings,” stated Commissioner Mike Ciavarro. “The two top teams will represent the league at the Disabled Festival in Buffalo, N.Y. in April. We hope one of our teams will capture the National Championship.”

The Legacy Sled Hockey Classic Championship is made possible by local partners whom with their support have blossomed this tournament into a one of a kind event across New England. Legacy Global Sports, Spaulding Adaptive Sports Program, Optima Bank & Trust, Porsche Stratham, Audi Stratham, Stratham Mitsubishi, and Dover Honda.

Sled hockey is the fast, exciting, rough-and-tumble version of ice hockey played primarily by people with lower limb mobility impairments. The game is essentially the same as “stand-up” ice hockey, the major difference being that the players use a sled with two hockey skate blades mounted under a seat.

The Northeast Sled Hockey League (NESHL) is a non-profit organization established in 2005 as a means for regional Sled Hockey teams to engage in competitive, sportsmanlike hockey. The NESHL is the first-ever organized, multi-state, adult sled hockey league in the United States with teams and athletes coming from Maine to Maryland. For more information, visit  

About our partners:

The Dr. Bernard R. and Edna M. Sears Adaptive Hockey Program at Spaulding Adaptive Sports Centers is dedicated to the growth of adaptive hockey in the Boston Metro area and Eastern Massachusetts for individuals of all abilities. The Sears program is part of the Massachusetts Sled Hockey Initiative which is a collaborative joining of Massachusetts Hockey, Spaulding Adaptive Sports Centers, Northeast Passage, Boston Shamrocks, Boston Junior Bruins, Minuteman Flames, the New England Sports Center and the DCR Universal Access Program.

LEGACY Global Sports is a global sporting event and athlete management company. With a full range of event & tour management, travel & housing services, player development and athlete representation, LEGACY provides a complete sports experience for youth athletes and their families. LEGACY’s mission is to impact the lives of our customers by maximizing individual potential and providing lifelong international and domestic experiences.

International Cars, Ltd. is an employee owned company comprised of seven New England area dealerships including Audi, Porsche and Mitsubishi of Stratham New Hampshire, Dover Honda and Dover Chevrolet in Dover New Hampshire as well as Honda North and the ICL Used Car Center in Danvers, Massachusetts.

Optima Bank & Trust is a New Hampshire, locally-owned commercial bank that provides the products, conveniences and technology you expect from a full-service community bank. We deliver a higher level of personal attention to all of our personal banking and commercial banking customers.

We want to change the way you think about banking. Everything is possible.TM