Insights

How the 2017/2018 Canadian Hockey League season shapes up on Twitter

By Christopher Doyle
Sunday, 17 September 2017

On Thursday of this week, the puck drops on the 2017/2018 Canadian Hockey League (@CHLHockey) regular season. Fans across Canada will once again flock to Twitter to cheer on their favourite teams and share the love for their favourite players, personalities and teams.

This Tweet is unavailable
This Tweet is unavailable.
This Tweet is unavailable.
This Tweet is unavailable.
This Tweet is unavailable.

The @CHLHockey is comprised of 60 teams from across three leagues: the Ontario Hockey League (@OHLHockey), the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (@QMJHL) and the Western Hockey League (@TheWHL). At the end of each season, the winners from each league, plus a host team, come together to compete for the #MemorialCup.

The @CHLHockey conversation continues to grow on Twitter with hockey fans in Canada and the U.S. joining the conversation in record numbers. For example, mentions of the #MemorialCup hashtag grew by 15% during the 2016/2017 season, when compared with the 2015/2016 season. Looking at a two-year stretch, mentions of #MemorialCup grew 28% when you compare the 2014/2015 and 2016/2017 campaigns.

This Tweet is unavailable
This Tweet is unavailable.
This Tweet is unavailable.

The Windsor Spitfires (@SpitsHockey) captured the #MemorialCup this past Spring and saw huge wins on Twitter too as a result. The team has already 1.6x more Twitter followers than they had heading into the past @CHL and they gained more new Twitter followers during the 2016/2017 season than any other team in the @OHL.

This Tweet is unavailable
This Tweet is unavailable.
This Tweet is unavailable.

Entering the 2017/2018 season, the London Knights (@GoLondonKnights) are once again the most followed team in @OHL and the @CHLHockey with more than 60,000 followers. The Edmonton Oil Kings (@EdmOilKings) are the most followed team in the @WHL with more than 50,000 followers while the Halifax Mooseheads (@HFXMooseheads) are the most followed team in the @QMJHL with more than 38,000 followers.

The Erie Otters (@ErieOtters) and Kitchener Rangers (@OHLRangers) round out the Top Five list of most followed @CHLHockey teams.

This Tweet is unavailable
This Tweet is unavailable.
This Tweet is unavailable.

Team mentions on Twitter also paint a picture of which fanbases are most active on the platform. These were the most mentioned CHL team accounts (by league) during the 2016/2017 hockey season:

Ontario Hockey League:

  1. Erie Otters (@ErieOtters)
  2. London Knights (@GoLondonKnights)
  3. Windsor Spitfires (@SpitsHockey)
  4. Mississauga Steelheads (@OHLSteelheads)
  5. Peterborough Petes (@PetesOHLHockey)

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League:

  1. Saint John Sea Dogs (@sjseadogs)
  2. Halifax Mooseheads (@HFXMooseheads)
  3. Charlottetown Islanders (@IslandersHKY)
  4. Moncton Wildcats (@monctonwildcats)
  5. Gatineau Olympiques (@LesOlympiques)

Western Hockey League:

  1. Seattle Thunderbirds (@SeattleTbirds)
  2. Regina Pats (@WHLPats)
  3. Lethbridge Hurricanes (@WHLHurricanes)
  4. Calgary Hitmen (@WHLHitmen)
  5. Portland Winterhawks (@PDXWinterhawks)

Interestingly, the Twitter discussion of the top US-based teams in the @CHLHockey was especially strong during the 2016/2017 season. If you take a cross section of the three most mentioned Canada-based teams (@GoLondonKnights, @SpitsHockey, @sjseadogs) and the three most mentioned US-based teams (@ErieOtters, @SeattleTbirds, @PDXWinterhawks), the American squads had 12% more total mentions during the past season than their Canadian counterparts.

Emerging @CHLHockey talents were also hot topics on Twitter over the past year. These were the most mentioned @CHLHockey players during the 2016/2017 hockey season:

  1. Dylan Strome, Erie Otters (@stromer19)
  2. Mikhail Sergachev, Windsor Spitfires (@sergachev31)
  3. Alex DeBrincat, Erie Otters (@Brinksy97)
  4. Jeremy Bracco, Windsor Spitfires (@jbracco97)
  5. Sam Steel, Regina Pats (@ssteel23)

Stay locked to Twitter this season for the best content, insights and live reactions as the 60 @CHLHockey teams vie for the #MemorialCup.

 

This Tweet is unavailable
This Tweet is unavailable.
@chrisdoyle

Christopher Doyle

‎@chrisdoyle‎

Head of Sports, Twitter Canada

Only on Twitter