By STEPHEN WHYNO
AP Hockey Writer
The NHL has brought back taxi squads amid a surge of COVID-19 cases, creating a strain on the American Hockey League, the ECHL and others down the hockey food chain in North America. This week, the NHL began allowing each of its 32 teams to carry up to six players on a taxi squad in an effort to keep the season going through the pandemic. That means nearly 200 players not available in the AHL and a domino effect for the ECHL and Southern Professional Hockey League. The SPHL is recruiting some guys who haven’t played professionally in multiple years.