The Chicago stop on the PWHPA’s Dream Gap tour has a much different feel than the previous two. Touted as USA versus the World, the third stop features an All-Star line up, both on the ice and behind the bench.
The four teams in the Oct. 18-20 showcase are named after and coached by women’s hockey legends from the US and Canada: Team [Cammi] Granato, Team [Angela] Ruggiero, Team [Lori] Dupuis, and Team [Jayna] Hefford.
The ambassador coaches, as the PWHPA is calling them, brings the movement full circle as they are who the current players looked up to as youth players.
The rosters themselves feature over 35 Olympians, with Noora Räty being the lone non-North American player.
The four games will be played at the Fifth Third Arena, the practice rink for the Chicago Blackhawks. Saturday’s games will see Team Hefford play Team Dupuis at 4 p.m. and Team Granato play Team Ruggiero at 7 p.m., setting up a USA v Canada final. Sunday’s games are both being played at noon, meaning fans will have to pick between the Championship and Consolation game.
The games will also be streamed on the PWHPA’s website.
The stop will also have a youth clinic called “Meet Your Sheros.” The PWHPA will also work with the Blackhawks for one of the NHL’s team “First Stride” session, a program that introduces Chicago Public Schools to skating and STEM eduction.
The showcase once again has a localized sponsor in Magellan, a Deerfield, IL based company. They also support the Chicago Red Stars (NWSL) and the Chicago Sky (WNBA). The Billie Jean King Foundation is listed as a partner in this stop as well.
“Billie Jean King is a sports, social justice and equality icon,” noted Bob Arthur, CEO of Magellan Corporation in the PWHPA’s press release. “When she and Ilana Kloss approached us to support women’s hockey, the fit was natural. We are already proud partners of NWSL’s Chicago Red Stars and the WNBA’s Chicago Sky. Let’s level the playing field for women and girls in sports.”