June 26, 2022

Canada’s Marie-Philip Poulin (29) celebrates with teammates after scoring towards the US throughout additional time in an exhibition hockey recreation Saturday, March 12, 2022, in Pittsburgh. Canada gained 4-3.Keith Srakocic/The Related Press

Upon including yet one more notch to her “Captain Clutch” nickname, and towards the People but once more, Canadian Marie-Philip Poulin centered much less on the previous and extra on the long run in seeing a glimpse of what skilled girls’s hockey might resemble sooner or later quickly.

The “Rivalry Rematch” on Saturday was an exhibition organized by the Skilled Ladies’s Hockey Gamers’ Affiliation, performed on an NHL rink and with financial backing from league and company sponsors, with a crowd of 5,400 readily available and broadcast nationally in each nations. And it was a showcase that coincided with the PWHPA intensifying discussions with choose NHL groups and its sponsors to launch a professional league inside the subsequent yr.

“Clearly, immediately was particular. It’s greater than a winner or loser to be sincere,” mentioned Poulin, who scored 2:13 into additional time to safe a 4-3 win.

“Strolling in, handled like professionals. I feel that’s one thing that we actually needed for years,” she added. “It was extra about girls’s hockey and I feel we made an announcement immediately.”

For Canadian girls’s hockey group, 3-2 victory over U.S. in Beijing reveals how ‘making a tradition’ pays off

Poulin’s purpose was the exclamation level, coming a little bit over three weeks after she scored the ultimate two targets in Canada’s gold medal-winning 3-2 win over the united statesat the Beijing Winter Olympics. The four-time Olympian’s listing of clutch targets consists of three gold-medal clinchers – all towards the US – and the additional time purpose in Canada’s 3-2 gold-medal win over the People on the world championships in August.

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With groups taking part in three skaters apart, Poulin drove to the best submit and had her centring go deflect off U.S. defender Megan Keller and thru the legs of goalie Nicole Hensley.

Blayre Turnbull, Jamie Lee Rattray and Jocelyne Larocque additionally scored for Canada, which has gained 5 consecutive conferences towards its cross-border rival.

Hilary Knight, Hayley Scamurra and Hannah Brandt scored for the People.

With Penguins captain Sidney Crosby watching from a set, the U.S. rallied from a pair of one-goal deficits and took a 3-2 lead on Scamurra’s purpose at 7:46 of the third interval. Canada responded 24 seconds later with Poulin organising Rattray snapping in a shot from the best circle.

The sport featured uneven rosters, with the U.S. dressing simply 14 skaters to the Canadians’ 17, and lacked the depth of each conferences in Beijing, and even the 2 nations’ six pre-Olympic tune-ups.

Placing apart the loss and America’s fierce on-ice rivalry with Canada, Knight referred to as the occasion “a beautiful glimpse into the close to future” by crediting the PWHPA and Penguins for pulling it off in 11 days.

The PWHPA was shaped three years in the past following the demise of the Canadian Ladies’s Hockey League with an goal to type a professional league with what it referred to as a sustainable financial mannequin with extra strong help for gamers.

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“We’re nearer than we’ve ever been,” PWHPA chief Jayna Hefford informed The Related Press in confirming discussions have ramped up.

“There’s loads of curiosity, loads of conversations happening. I feel groups, now greater than an ever, are seeing how accretive it’s to their enterprise,” Hefford added. “It’s not about the best factor to do. It’s not something apart from that is good for our enterprise and that is good for the enterprise of hockey.”

The Washington Capitals and Toronto Maple Leafs have been among the many strongest and most notable PWHPA companions. The Penguins have a number of ties to girls’s hockey in turning into the NHL’s eleventh franchise to associate with the PWHPA.

“We’ve acquired to determine a long-term plan that features the Nationwide Hockey League, and I do know they’re keen to do it,” mentioned Penguins president Brian Burke, a long-time proponent of ladies’s hockey and the PWHPA. “We’ve been gradual to determine the perfect path, nevertheless it’s not as a result of the NHL will not be behind it. It’s simply making an attempt to determine the easiest way to go.”

Citing the extent of talent on show in the course of the girls’s Olympic event, Burke mentioned: “I feel we’re poised to take the subsequent massive, massive step and that’s going to occur, I feel, within the subsequent 18 months.”

The ladies’s gamers would like it occurred yesterday, whereas understanding how crucial it’s for the funding and partnerships to be in place earlier than launching on their very own.

“Whereas it’s been irritating these previous couple of years to not have full seasons, to not have leagues to play in, we perceive that that is greater than ourselves,” Canadian ahead Brianne Jenner mentioned. “And we’re keen to undergo the correct course of and ensure that no matter is subsequent to come back goes to final indefinitely.”

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It’s why Hefford has been cautious in releasing an excessive amount of info or putting a timetable on when a professional league may be established.

“We don’t wish to do that once more. We acquired to ensure we get it proper this time,” she mentioned.

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan cited his daughters as key causes to help girls’s hockey.

“My daughters seemed as much as these women, the Cammi Granatos and the ladies that gained the gold medal on the Olympics. They usually’re not not like boys in that regard, the place they’re wanting as much as the Crosbys and the Malkins and the Letangs,” Sullivan mentioned, referencing Penguins stars. “That’s what evokes them to wish to play. … I feel all of us have a accountability to try to develop the sport in that regard.”

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Extra AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/nhl and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports