Sports radio in Calgary and a team's marketing employee are saying EA Sports' NHL 11 will feature teams from the Canadian Hockey League, the top tier of junior hockey in that country.
Although there is minor league hockey in North America, Major Junior hockey, as it's known, is played by 16- to 20-year-olds, and the majority of NHL players have seen some kind of action in in its three leagues. So bringing in teams from the Ontario Hockey League, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and Western Hockey League would deepen the game's singleplayer career mode and diversify choices available in general manager mode.
The first word came from Dhiren Mahiban of CKNW-AM radio in Calgary, via Twitter: "EA Sports NHL 2011 will have a #CHL mode where you can play with teams from the #WHL , #OHL and #QMJHL"
Operation Sports then noticed an unconfirmed post on a Colorado Avalanche message board purporting to be from a marketing employee of the London (Ont.) Knights of the OHL.
"When I showed up for work and there was an email forwarded to me from my boss saying that EA Sports needs pictures of our home and away jerseys with all different numbers and the C's and A's because the OHL, WHL, and QMJHL are all going to be part of NHL11."
The original post has since been removed.
I emailed EA Sports to ask for comment; if they confirm/deny/no comment, we'll publish it here.
NHL 11 To Have CHL Teams? (WHL, OHL, QMJHL) [Operation Sports]