The PWHPA and the United States Premier Hockey League (USPHL) have come to an agreement to play a series of exhibition games during the 2020-21 season. The PWHPA will play each of the USPHL’s NCDC teams once. The NCDC is the top tier of the USPHL, and is a Tier-2 Junior Hockey league based in the northeastern part of the United States.
Both the NCDC and the PWHPA have ratified this agreement, per sources close to the conversations. Official game dates and times will be announced at a later date.
“I am extremely excited to see our NCDC teams participate in an exhibition series with the PWHPA,” USPHL Commissioner Richard Gallant said. “To bring young men and women together to showcase their talents in front of a wide audience of aspiring young players and fans will create lasting memories for all involved. The USPHL is a proud supporter of the PWHPA and we look forward to maintaining this relationship in the years to come.”
All costs associated with the games will be picked up by the NCDC member teams, according to a source. All games will follow the junior protocols, while locations for each game will be announced at a later date.
The PWHPA is entering its second season after forming in the spring of 2019 immediately after the Canadian Women’s Hockey League (CWHL) dissolved. The PWHPA’s mission is to promote, advance, and support a single, viable professional women’s hockey league in North America that showcases the greatest product of women’s professional ice hockey in the world. The organization also aims to provide a united voice to players advocating for the creation of a sustainable professional league.
The PWHPA announced a new regional training hub structure earlier this spring. The training hubs will be based in Toronto, Montreal, New Hampshire, Minnesota and Calgary.
“The PWHPA is excited to join forces with the USPHL in a partnership that will allow our members to have more local opportunities to compete,” Jayna Hefford, PWHPA Operations Consultant, said. “We applaud the vision and focus on inclusivity that the USPHL has shown, and we look forward to helping to grow the game together, for everyone.”
The New Hampshire regional training hub is looking to play each of the NCDC clubs once over the course of the 2020-21 season. Their home building, Cyclones Arena, also is home to the Northern Cyclones, one of the NCDC’s member clubs.
“It’s a tremendous gesture by the USPHL and NCDC owners and coaches to support the PWHPA’s mission of obtaining a sustainable professional hockey league,” Northern Cyclones NCDC head coach and New Hampshire regional training hub GM and coach Bill Flanagan said. “These games will provide the women with outstanding competition to continue their hockey development.”
More details will become available soon.