Gigi Marvin first saw women’s hockey on TV in 1998. It was during the Winter Olympics, where the United States would win a Gold Medal. No one on that Gold Medal winning team realized it in that exact moment, but they set in motion the dreams of countless girls around the country. The dream of being an Olympic Gold Medalist. Marvin was one of those young girls.
” When I was 9 or 10 and saw women’s hockey for the first time on TV (1998 Olympics), that set in motion my dreams to be an Olympic Gold Medalist. Prior to watching on TV, I had never seen women’s hockey played; much less at the highest level,” Marvin told me via email earlier this week.
She’ll get a chance to give back on Wednesday night. Marvin is one of four PWHPA players who will participate in both the ECHL All-Star Skills Competition and All-Star Game. One PWHPA player will be assigned to each of the four teams for the three-on-three tournament in Wichita.
” Visibility is huge and we’re grateful to not only be a part of this event; but also that it’s going to be aired on NHL Network,” Marvin continued. The event will air live on national TV next Wednesday night. The Women’s Hockey Tribune will also be there covering the game, as our Craig White will be in Wichita.
Of course, all four women at the event will want to show off their speed and skill. In a three-on-three format, they’ll have a chance to shine. That’s important, but the lasting impact of women playing hockey on national TV is more important to Marvin.
“The exposure propelled me toward my future career and accomplishing my dreams; therefore, it’s exciting to think about how this ECHL All-Star Classic will do the same for other little girls who watch women competing on TV.”
The platform being given here is vitally important. It is the first of two key events for women’s hockey next week. First is the ECHL All-Star Game, then comes the NHL All-Star Weekend. That is where women will participate in the skills competition and play a three-on-three game.
The NHL has long provided its support to women’s hockey. It’s significant that the ECHL is also now showing its support. Two of the big three hockey leagues in North America are behind these women and what they are fighting for.
“It means a lot to have the ECHL’s support of women’s hockey and to include us in their All-Star Classic,” Marvin admitted. It is the first time that women will participate in the event.
For Marvin, all of this is exciting and important. It all leads to a little family time too. A nice added benefit for the Gold Medalist, who will get the chance to play in front of her cousin.
“I’m most excited about having my cousin, Rachel, in the stands!” Marvin said glowingly. “I don’t see her too often because she goes to school at Oklahoma State University, so it’ll be a blast having her in Wichita cheering us on.”
A chance to give back to the game and catch up with family. For Gigi Marvin, next week promises to be extremely special.