The NWHL has announced that the 2020 Isobel Cup Final between the Boston Pride and Minnesota Whitecaps has been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Originally scheduled for March 13, the final was postponed the day before due to COVID-19. The decision to cancel the game was made by the NWHL, the NWHLPA, and the players, coaches and leadership of the Pride and Whitecaps.

“We’re very disappointed for these two great teams and the fans that we came one game shy of completing our season, but this global health crisis transcends sports,” said NWHL Commissioner Dani Rylan. “On a personal level, our focus remains on looking out for each other and taking care of our families. As a league and business, everything we’ve done since the pandemic began, and everything we will continue to do, is centered on being well-positioned for a safe return to play.

“Our target opening date for the 2020-21 season is six months from now, in mid-November. When the games begin again, we want to be the best we’ve ever been — for our fans, players, partners, and everyone who believes in the NWHL. My thanks to all of you.”

The captains for both squads released statements on the cancellation of the game.

Statement from Pride captains Jillian Dempsey, Lexi Bender, and Kaleigh Fratkin:

“We are disappointed to not have the opportunity to play for the Isobel Cup this season, but we understand that everybody’s health and safety is the priority. We appreciate all the support from our fans! It was an incredible season, and we are so proud of what our team achieved. We are hungrier than ever for another chance to hoist the Cup! Thank you for rooting for us. Stay safe and see you at Warrior in the fall!”

Statement from Whitecaps captains Allie Thunstrom, Winny Brodt Brown, Jonna Curtis and Brooke White-Lancette:

“While we are incredibly saddened to not be able to play the championship game this season, we absolutely understand that the health and safety of our team, staff, fans, and everyone involved is the only priority, and we support the decision to cancel the Isobel Cup Final. Although we looked forward to defending our title, we are so proud of the hockey we played this year and the preparations we made for the playoffs. We’d also like to congratulate the Pride on their tremendous season. We know it would have been an exciting final to play and watch. And finally, thank you so much to all the fans who supported us this season in-person and online. TRIA Rink is electric to play in and that is a direct result of the amazing fans we have in the State of Hockey. We can’t wait to play in front of you again next season! Stay safe and stay healthy. We are all stronger together.”