The My Why Tour kicks off in Allentown, PA — Ivo Mocek talks Riveters — Must-click women’s hockey links

The IX: Hockey Friday with Erica L. Ayala, October 22, 2021

Allentown, PA will host two of the top Women’s hockey teams today for the official kick-off of the ‘My Why’ Series. The United States and Canada will play a nine-game exhibition series ahead of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, China.

Both teams have placed players in centralization (CAN) and residency (USA) programs, respectively. Fans of hockey can get a look at both talent pools ahead of the final roster selection come December/January.

The My Why (not in love with this name) Tour will open in PA and make stops in Hartford, and Saint Paul and more dates set to be announced. The US team will also face-off against Team Russia in Belfast next month.

It’s great to see a return to games with fans and travel, especially ahead of the Olympics. The last two years of uncertainty have made it difficult to get excited about hockey and all the potential immediate and long-term health effects. To be clear, I am not saying we are out of the woods.

We’ve seen NHL player Brandon Sutter and WNBA guard Asia Durr among the COVID long haulers. Even with vaccines, positive and/or inconclusive tests will still impact the game. That said, a cautious optimism is better than the overwhelming fear. Here’s hoping we continue to stay diligent and think of the bigger picture.

What the last two hockey seasons has proven once again is that women’s hockey remains nimble. It has also continued to show there are differences of opinion about how to grow the game and what we will and won’t tolerate (and by whom) regarding companies that compromise hockey alleged commitment equity.

Yes, it’s messy and hella petty but I still see the potential in this community. I see the work of Black Girl Hockey Club, Blake Bolden, Soul on Ice, and many more as a glimpse into the future. Soon enough, I won’t be the only Black person on a PHF broadcast team. So there you have it, I guess that’s my why!


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This Week in Women’s Hockey

DO YOU BELIEVE IN MORE COVERAGE FOR WOMEN IN SPORTS? Good, click these links and show decision-makers that if you post it, we will read it! If you have any hot tips for great stories or voices you’d like to see in The IX, email me: erica@ericaLayala.com.

Women’s Hockey Life held a panel to discuss the book Game Misconduct: Hockey’s Toxic Hockey Culture. I was honored to join authors Evan F. Moore and Jashvina Shah for an important conversation.

The Metropolitan Riveters and Connecticut Whale square off ahead of season opener

ESPN+ will carry the entire Premier Hockey Federation (formerly the NWHL) season. I’ll be one of the broadcasters calling the games. I hope you’ll tune in!

Hockey Canada prepares for the My Why Tournament

Meet the teams advancing to the final round of Olympic qualifiers.

Set an alert for Wisconsin vs Ohio State this weekend!

The PHF announced a streaming deal with ESPN+, more details on International streaming coming soon.

The weekly NCAA water cooler with Nicole and Arlan!

Young goalie Kalyssa Bayne is making a name for herself. I’ve had the honor of meeting the Bayne Family a handful of times. Wishing you luck, can’t wait to call your games sometime soon!


The Badgers are Bling Ringing!

Canadian Olympian Meaghan Mikkelson aiming for Beijing

Puerto Rican ice hockey team wins gold at Amerigold Latem Cup

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Tweet of the Week


Five at The IX: Ivo Mocek – Riveters Head Coach

The team hit the ice today before a tune-up against the Connecticut Whale Saturday. What are looking to see from that game ahead of the home opener November 6th?

Just continue doing all the work we do in practice and show within a game. We did, I would say, a solid last Saturday in Princeton and obviously got some practices since then to improve. So again I’m just hoping that we’re gonna show it on Saturday.

There’s a training camp roster. When will you have that final roster ahead of the opening weekend?

Pretty much after after a game against Connecticut you know, I believe next week we’re going to have it you know, finalized and then just ready to go and then prepare for the to the opener.

How much of how things ended in Lake Placid is fueling this team? It was such a stacked roster and then things spun out of control with COVID. Connecticut decided to leave the #NDubble but then found their way back to the playoffs. Is that fueling you or is it clean slate?

okay let me put it this way. There are still nights that I wake up in the middle of the night and I’m just thinking about what what went down there. I feel that we had a very strong group there I feel that group was ready to win, not just games but ready to win the whole thing. I feel that there were some players, especially some of the veteran players who felt like that might be their chance to win the trophy, to win the cup. So it was definitely heartbreaking you know, frustrating and especially after finding out that we were not part of the final weekend.

So it definitely was heartbreaking. But now I can see it you know, with the players who were members of the team last season that they want to accomplish something big and they have an extra spark.

The PHF will be on ESPN+ this season. What do you make of that news?

First of all, I’m sure you’ve heard that before, I think it’s a great step for women’s hockey. That’s number one. It means a lot to women’s hockey and everybody around us and it’s been great to be part of it. Me personally I’m just more happy for the players you know that this league started seven years ago not knowing what’s going to be and now players are going to be on national TV. I’m really happy for them, for the veteran players you know that their work is paying off.

So does that change your wardrobe for this season?

TBD.

We have joked about it a little bit already but there might be some improvements or some different different styles

I know your sock game is pretty strong. We don’t always get to see that on the screen.

It was really funny with Stretch (original Rivs captain and Season 6 assistant coach). We were always talked about what we’re going to wear. So this year Kelly (Nash) and I will get on that.


Mondays: Soccer
By: Annie Peterson, @AnnieMPeterson AP Women’s Soccer
Tuesdays: Tennis
By Joey Dillon, @JoeyDillon Freelance Tennis Writer
Wednesdays: Basketball
By: Howard Megdal, @HowardMegdal The Next
Thursdays: Golf
By Sarah Kellam @sarahkellamLPGA.com
Fridays: Hockey
By: Erica Ayala, @Elindsay08 Premier Hockey League Broadcaster
Saturdays: Gymnastics
By Jessica Taylor Price, @jesstaylorprice, Freelance Gymnastics Writer

Written by Erica L. Ayala