Mid-Week Roundup: Mainly NWHL news, NWHL pre-season games!

NWHL Pre-Season Games!

  • The Buffalo Beauts beat the Mercyhurst women’s team, 4-1. Check out the NWHL’s recap!
  • The East Coast Wizards U16 Boys beat the Boston Pride, 3-2
  • FDNY beat the New York Riveters, 6-2. The NWHL recapped this game.
  • The Conneticut Whale beat the CT Junior Rangers U18 Boys, 7-4.

Stuff to Read Elsewhere:

  • The NWHL announced their last signing, Meghan Duggan, bringing us to the full 72 player roster. Kate Cimini at Today’s Slap Shot wrote about it.
  • Matt Larkin of The Hockey Writers wrote about who the highest-paid players in the NWHL would be. He also had some details on player contracts:

    THN has also learned that players must notify their coaches and GM at least 30 days in advance if they know they will miss a game or practice, barring an emergency or medical problem. Missing games and practices will result in salary deductions.

    Larkin also confirmed that, although jerseys are currently the only player-branded merchandise, in the future, players will receive their 15% from all merchandise with their name or likeness.

  • The NWHL posted all official player salaries! Sadly, the league will apparently not be making more details of player contracts public, as had previously been hoped.
  • Tara Tomimoto, previously reported as signed with the Connecticut Whale, had visa issues and was released, but the NWHL doesn’t anticipate other players having visa issues.
  • Kate Cimini spoke to Kacey Bellamy about playing on the Boston Pride. One of the most interesting things to me was Bellamy’s comments about her Merrimack commitments, where she also coaches.

    “For me, right now, the priority is Merrimack, so any time I have a Merrimack and Pride conflict I go to the Merrimack (event),” said Bellamy. “I think I have to miss six Pride games, about four or five practices.”

    With each NWHL team playing only 18 games in the regular season, 9 home and 9 away, missing 6 games is a fairly substantial number. There are several other players in the NWHL with coaching commitments as well, including Meghan Duggan. It’ll be interesting to see how many games those players manage, and how this impacts teams with such short rosters.

  • Connor Jennings at Powerplay Insiders thinks Megan Bozek will be one of the NWHL’s top defenders.

Weekly News: NWHL Tickets, Kacey Bellamy, and NCAA Games

  • Tickets for the NWHL’s pre-season games are on sale! Unlike my prediction of free, the tickets cost $5 USD, except for the Mercyhurst games, which are free. Additionally, it turns out that the final East Coast Wizards teams that the Pride will play are both boys teams– the U16, and the U18 teams.
  • Keep on scrolling past the pre-season games, and you’ll see that single game tickets for the NWHL go on sale September 24th, 12:01 AM Eastern! That’s tomorrow.
  • Brampton Thunder’s new head coach, Tyler Fines, starts practices.
  • Lexie Hoffmeyer is not playing this year! The CWHL’s twitter presence will be the worse for it. She will be coaching, not sure where yet, and will also still be involved with the Furies in some capacity.

Weekly News: Shannon Szabados, Kendra Broad, and more

“The biggest thing that we’re looking for, what Dani (Rylan, league founder and commissioner) likes to say is: ‘we want to have 72 stars in this league,’” said the representative. “We want to have every player in this league be a big deal. The best way to do that is for everybody to know them and care about them and have information on them.”

“I knew I had to come here (to Western) to finish my fifth year of eligibility,” she said. Not that it was easy to walk away from the prospect of going pro. “Even though it’s not a lot of money… it was kind of hard to turn that down,” she said.

On top of the talented draft class, Jordanna Peroff, who was acquired Friday from Toronto where she won the 2014 Clarkson Cup, was back with several McGill teammates including Charline Labonte, team captain Cathy Chartrand, Ann-Sophie Bettez, Carly Hill, and others.

“As a team, we need to become stronger defensively and offer our goaltenders more support,” said General Manager, Rebecca Michael. “Up front, we need to start producing more throughout all four lines and not solely depending on our top players.”

“I’m pretty confident either way I’ll get a good amount of ice time, but definitely I’d like to play a little bit of a bigger role this year with a year of experience,” Szabados told The Canadian Press. “I’m a lot more confident going into this season with how I played last year.”

The Beauts don’t have as much veteran experience as the other NWHL teams, but look for the team to develop into one of the fastest and possibly one of the highest-scoring teams in the league.

  • Need to find a NWHL team to cheer for? Taylor Clark is running a series previewing each NWHL team and their facilities over on Along the Boards. So far she’s done the Buffalo Beauts and the Boston Pride.

Friday Read: New York Riveters move to Brooklyn, Boston Blades new managment

The NWHL Signs Janine Weber

“Janine is a big power forward, who has a great net-front presence and knack for scoring big goals,” [Rylan] said. “The New York Riveters are thrilled to welcome Janine to the team and we are excited to watch her game continue to grow.”

NWHL Moves New York Riveters Home Rink to Brooklyn

The NWHL founder and commissioner Dani Rylan, who also serves as New York Riveters GM, announced to media Thursday morning that the League had recently signed a contract for the Riveters with Aviator Sports and Events in Brooklyn, New York.

CWHL ANNOUNCES BOSTON BLADES’ MANAGEMENT TEAM

The CWHL announced today that it has appointed the team of Krista Patronick and Michelle Clement-Billingsley to lead the management and operations of the Boston Blades. Patronick assumes the role of general manager, while Clement-Billingsley is director of operations.

Weekly Read: Poulin to CWHL, Ambrose a top NWHL prospect

Olympic star Marie-Philip Poulin coming back to CWHL

“My first choice was always to come back home to Quebec and have the opportunity to play for the Montreal Stars,” Poulin said in a statement. “The team has a great leadership core with so many skilled players, it would be an honour for me to join such an exceptional group.”

Defender Erin Ambrose a Top Prospect For NWHL Draft

Ambrose has made herself into a boon both defensively and offensively to her team, coming in to her freshman year at Clarkson as one of the top defensive prospects in the country, and immediately becoming a top-two defender for the university. She scored six goals and 30 assists in her freshman year, winning the ECAC’s Rookie of the Year award and placing on the All-ECAC Second Team.

Link Round-up: The CWHL and the NHL

That’s a pretty small selection of the articles and tweets that I’ve seen flying around. I’m not really sure yet where I stand on this, for a couple different reasons.

First is, I know there are a lot of new fans of women’s hockey/the CWHL this season, specifically drawn in by the Clarkson Cup, and they’re all running smack into the unfairness that is the current state of the league. (We did this too, when we started following the CWHL more closely!) But this conversation around the CWHL and the NHL has been going on for a while, and previous iterations of it is why we have the limited partnerships between the Stars and the Canadians, the Furies and the Maple Leafs, the Inferno and the Flames, etc. So, while it’s not an unimportant conversation to have, I’d like to see a little less ‘but WHY ISN’T ANYTHING BEING DONE’. Maybe the cry needs to be “MORE NEEDS TO BE DONE”, but there is a history here already, too. It can be hard to find as the news coverage of women’s hockey has traditionally waned and waxed with the Winter Olympics, however.

Secondly, I see a lot of aggressive moralizing around this topic. Which, yeah, the argument to be made about why the NHL should support the CWHL isn’t purely a financial one, although I believe there’s a financial argument to be made. But taking a scolding tone, attempting to shame people into becoming fans of a thing, that never works. You’ll get more fans by talking about how awesome a thing is, not how morally correct supporting it is.

Finally, and most annoying to me, most of the arguments I see for why the NHL should partner with the CWHL include as an often unspoken matter of fact that NHL hockey is the best hockey. Partnering with the NHL would provide the manly stamp of approval for the CWHL, as NHL hockey is the best hockey, and guys, I’m just not that into the CWHL needing the validation of a pretty flawed league with few stakes in their success. The CWHL is great hockey, full stop. It’s an entertaining experience, full stop. It doesn’t need the NHL to prove that. Yes, there are resources the NHL has that could help the CWHL– but the NHL is not the only source of those resources, and may not be the best one to provide that for the league’s future growth. Why am I not seeing more calls for a closer partnership with the Hockey Canada and USA Hockey a la the NWSL and the various soccer federations they have partnered with? We want to grow the game so it’s not just USA and Canada as the main event every four years, right? Why not work more with the non-North American hockey organizations to make the CWHL a place for their players to develop past college? It was Janine Weber, an Austrian player, who scored that OT goal for the Blades to win the Clarkson Cup, and she’s been a really solid contributor all season.

Gotta say, though, I love the idea of Stars v. Blades precursor to the NHL Winter Classic in Boston next year. 🙂

Mid-Week Link Roundup: Shannon Miller’s firing, sexism in sport, and #GrowingTheGame

Shannon Miller’s Firing

Myers’s piece is especially disingenuous because he treats men’s and women’s hockey like equal things when they’re not. Do you know why a men’s coach might have a different reaction to being fired than a women’s coach? Because those firings mean completely different things in those separate worlds.

  • Angelica, who occasionally writes for this blog, covered the firing and the possibly discriminatory nature for Hockey Wilderness as well.

Sexism in Sports!

[I] realized that, outside of TV sideline reporters, I couldn’t name one prominent female sports journalist other than Sally Jenkins of The Washington Post (who has been profiled in Quill’s “Ten” feature). Is it a pipeline problem? Are women really not interested in going into this field? Is the field inhospitable now, in 2015?

  • As women’s hockey fans, I’m sure we’re all familiar with the phenomenon where, when women’s hockey has commentary, it’s more often than not commentary on what all these amazingly talented women’s brothers are doing in the NHL/college hockey/etc. (Thank you CWHL announcing, which for the vast majority of the time manages to avoid this!) A similar phenomenon is how different the kind of questions women athletes are asked compared to their male counterparts. Derrick Clifton wrote a piece for mic.com about how absurd it would sound if male athletes were asked the same question as women. I wasn’t unfamiliar with this, and his piece was still incredibly striking.
    [Derrick Clifton/mic.com]
    [Derrick Clifton/mic.com] Not an unfamilar question to women’s hockey fans, right?

 

Beanpot!

CWHL Videos!

A couple nice videos to send you on your way after wading through all that sexism stuff!

This Week in Women’s Hockey: The Insurance Bureau of Canada wants YOU to bench your phone

  • IBC, the newest sponsor of the CWHL, is understandably, as an insurance company, concerned with texting and driving– and made a quick video spot featuring Christina Kessler of the Toronto Furies to illustrate what a bad idea it is. Check it out:
  • Karyn Bye Dietz was inducted to the US Hockey Hall of Fame recently– she led the 1998 US Olympic Women’s hockey team in goals at the Nagano Olympics where the US won gold (five goals, six game), and was the alternate captain of the team. She’s the third woman to be inducted into the US Hockey Hall of Fame.

Check out Bye Dietz’ acceptance speech– she mentions the fact that in 9th grade, her dad counseled her against continuing to play hockey because he didn’t think there was a career in it. Thankfully she did, but it’s a reminder of the fact that girls playing hockey often don’t have an assumed hope of career success. As someone who grew up knowing women played hockey at the Olympics because of women like her, that’s kind of chilling.

Also check out the really nice retrospective on her career that the US Hall of Fame put together–

That’s about it! It’s been a slow week for us, between the upcoming All-Star Game, moving our servers, and my own health issues. Take care and don’t get phished, kids.

Mid-Week Links: CWHL All-Star Game, Ammerman spearheads soccer league, COC LGBT initative

  • We’re waiting for some clarification, but if you’re going to the CWHL All-Star Game, you might want to double-check the page with ticketing information— it looks like the event now requires a ticket, whereas before the RSVP was just for a headcount.

First off, CJ of Power Play with CJ did an interview with Knight–

Dewar’s, the scotch company, appear to have picked up Knight as one of the faces of their brand, and as such put out a profile of her– she mostly talks about her work with the Olympic team and her various charity work, but still pretty interesting.

Finally, looks like Knight’s selling some neat t-shirts and signed posters of her– check it out over at blixknight.com.

Owly Image

Mid-Week Links: Boston Blades update, Calgary’s All-Star Players

Update on Boston Blades Game Cancellations:

First off, we’ve heard from a couple different sources including the CWHL that the “player eligibility issues” (as the league put it) have been resolved, and Boston will play this upcoming weekend! Notably, the league also said that the All Stars Game would proceed as scheduled, which is great to hear.

If you bought tickets for the canceled games, email the CWHL about getting a refund. If you’re a Boston Blades season ticket holder, you’ll get a gift certificate; if you bought single game tickets, a direct refund.

Mid-Week Links Round-Up:

We don’t have a ton else for links this week– Most of us here at Watch This are Americans, and are getting ready for the Thanksgiving holiday. Expect some pretty normal content from us the rest of the week though– we should have another piece from Elena, and hopefully our first piece from Cait of Women’s Hockey News, as well as the normal weekend game previews.

If you’re American, we at Watch This Hockey hope you have a happy Thanksgiving, and if you’re not, we hope you enjoy the coming weekend of hockey!