Links News and Notes: International Women’s Day, More Teams Opting Out of Pride Jerseys
It’s the Thursday edition of Links, News and Notes!
- Yesterday was International Women’s Day, and Ian Kennedy reported that the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association plans on establishing a women’s chapter. He later clarified that the chapter is for writers focusing on women’s hockey, and not for female writers. I’m interested to see where this goes, and hope it will lead to more coverage of women’s sports./
BREAKING: The Professional Hockey Writers' Association (@ThePHWA) is set to establish a Women's chapter and increase partnerships with professional women's hockey leagues in the very near future to better support the growth of women's hockey.— Ian Kennedy (@IanKennedyCK) March 8, 2023
More to come
- Sportsnet sat down with one of my personal favourite hockey players, Mikyla Grant-Mentis, to talk about her journey to the PHF. She’s a phenomenal player who should absolutely be on your radar, and the interview is great.
- On that note, yesterday also saw the release of a documentary on Black women in hockey, titled Ice Queens./
- Another update on teenage Slovakian phenom Nela Lopusanova: after torching the Slovak women’s and men’s leagues as a teenager, she’s moving to the States to study at a high school just outside of Rochester, NY and play on their U19 women’s hockey team. It’s a huge decision for a 15-year-old, but the US has much better women’s hockey programs than Slovakia does, so this is probably the right decision for her hockey career. I can’t wait to see what incredible heights she’s able to reach.
- The Athletic ($$) caught up with Claire Thompson, who won Gold for Canada at last year’s Olympics, and is now playing NCAA hockey while in Medical School.
- Some Sens fans may already be aware of Oliver Bonk, the son of former Ottawa Senator Radek Bonk and a draft-eligible prospect projected to go in the second round of this summer’s NHL entry draft. His current team, the London Knights, just released a clip of an upcoming video, where it looks like one of Bonk’s teammates is going around asking players who they think is going to win the Stanley Cup this year. Bonk’s answer is iconic./
Oliver Bonk is rocking with the #GoSensGo to win the Stanley Cup ‼️ pic.twitter.com/GGxrvA39VA— London Knights (@LondonKnights) March 8, 2023
My favourite part of the clip actually isn’t that Bonk thinks the Sens are winning the cup. It’s that the teammate anticipates that answer, getting ahead of it by imploring him not to name Ottawa. This suggests that Oliver Bonk regularly talks about how he thinks the Sens are winning the Cup. I fear I’m obsessed, and I’m already trying to come up with ways the Sens can trade up into the second round to draft him this summer.
- In Sens news, Cam Talbot is out 3 weeks with a mid-body injury. Rookies Mads Sogaard and Kevin Mandolese will have to be the ones to carry the Sens into the playoff race.
- And in former sens news, Erik Karlsson remains the frontrunner to win the Norris trophy, according to NHL.com.
- The QMJHL has hired Mario Cecchini as its new commissioner, after Gilles Courteau resigned amid backlash over hazing rituals in hockey.
- The Minnesota Wild have become the latest team to back out of wearing Pride jerseys for their Pride game. It’s incredibly concerning that the backlash against LGBTQ+ rights has gotten so severe that teams are refusing to do even these small gestures. It’s also incredibly unfortunate for the artists who worked on these jerseys, and the charities that were supposed to benefit from the auctions.
- One small bit of hope: a new queer-led non-profit focused on creating a safer environment for LGBTQ+ people in hockey launched this week. Alphabet Sports Collective is exactly what the hockey world needs right now, and has some great people on its board. I’m looking forward to what they do, and would recommend checking them out!/