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The Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association and its Dream Gap Tour are coming back to Chicago. The Blackhawks announced on Tuesday that they will host two Secret Dream Gap Tour games next month, one at the United Center on March 6, and another at Fifth Third Arena on March 7. The games are part of a “barnstorming” tour aimed to showcase some the best talent in women’s hockey.
"Returning to Chicago builds upon past successes in women's hockey at the United Center," said Jayna Hefford, PWHPA operations consultant in the press release. "Our athletes are excited to play at the United Center. More than the game, this partnership helps advance our mission of creating a sustainable pro women's hockey league that showcases the outstanding skills of our athletes and allows young girls to dream just as the boys do today."
"We are extremely proud for Chicago to be the only U.S. city to host the Secret Dream Gap Tour games twice since PWHPA's inception," said Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot in the release. "Chicago is the greatest sports town in the country, and we commend the many athletes who are breaking barriers and inspiring the next generation of young women who take the game and the athletic world to even greater heights."
The Chicago Showcase will take place one year after the Blackhawks and NBC Sports teamed up for the first ever all-female broadcast of an NHL game. On March 8, 2020, Kate Scott, A.J. Mleczko, Kendall Coyne Schofield and about 30 other women comprised the all-female crew in honor of International Women’s Day.
Now Coyne Schofield will be back, but this time playing on the ice. Scott and Mleczko will be back to broadcast the games as well, along with Kathryn Tappen on NBC Sports. Coverage begins March 6 at 2 p.m.
"The Blackhawks are thrilled to once again welcome the PWHPA into our home campus, the United Center and community ice rink Fifth Third Arena, as they bring the exciting and competitive women's game to a national audience from Chicago," said Jaime Faulkner, Chicago Blackhawks President of Business Operations in the release. "The outpouring of support from across the nation that both Kendall and I received after recently joining the Blackhawks organization shows that women having a seat at the table matters. Girls and young women, including my own daughters, are increasingly seeing themselves as part of our sport's future, and we hope to sustain that momentum and visibility through this important partnership with the PWHPA and beyond."
The Dream Gap Tour previously came to Chicago in October 2019.
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