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Monday, March 20, 2017

The Buffalo Beauts win Isobel Cup this year

Who? Won what?

The Buffalo Beauts - one of four National Women's Hockey League (NWHL) teams that actually exist. Until a few weeks ago, I didn't know anything about the NWHL, but now, I am interested in finding out a lot more about it, thanks in part to the big hullabaloo over the impending USWNT boycott of the World Championship. Btw, they are scheduled to meet with USA Hockey today to continue negotiations.

In the meantime, and regardless of the outcome of the negotiations or the World Championship, I am now deadly curious about the NWHL, and any other women's hockey leagues that I can get my eyes on.

About the NWHL (quoted from the official website):
The NWHL is the first professional women’s hockey league in North America to pay its players. The inaugural season began October 11, 2015 with the Founding Four: Boston Pride, Buffalo Beauts, Connecticut Whale and New York Riveters. The Boston Pride became the first team in NWHL history to raise the Isobel Cup on March 12, 2016. 
Untitled
Team Kessel, Team Steadman salute the crowd at NWHL All-Star weekend, 2017.
By j_rho, (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) via Flickr
So, they closed out their 2016-2017 season yesterday in Lowell, MA with their cup final between the Buffalo Beauts and Boston Pride. The end result was Beauts win 3-2. They are done for this season, but I'm looking forward to next season and possible road trips to Buffalo to attend some games.

The trouble with women's hockey is, where do you watch it? Unless it's an international game, these games are typically not televised, or even streamed. However, the Isobel Cup final was exclusively streamed on ABSNews.com and the ABC News App this year. I think that women's hockey could benefit tremendously from better media coverage. It needs to be more accessible, like Women's basketball. It's not hard to find NCAAW games to watch on TV, especially this time of year.

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