The 2021-22 Premier Hockey Federation (PHF) season will conclude with the Connecticut Whale and Boston Pride facing off for the Isobel Cup trophy on Monday night at AdventHealth Center Ice in Wesley Chapel, Florida.
The Whale will be aiming to earn the team’s first ever Isobel Cup trophy, while the Pride — already the only two-time champs in league history (2016, 2021) — could further their legacy with a third title.
NWHL/PHF Isobel Cup Champions:
Founded as the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) in 2015, the league rebranded as the Premier Hockey Federation (PHF) ahead of the 2021-22 season.
- 2015-16: Boston Pride (inaugural NWHL season)
- 2016-17: Buffalo Beauts
- 2017-18: Metropolitan Riveters
- 2018-19: Minnesota Whitecaps (Minnesota’s first season in the NWHL)
- 2019-20: Not awarded due to COVID-19 Pandemic
- 2021: Boston Pride
- 2021-22: TBD (Connecticut Whale or Boston Pride)
The Connecticut Whale, the No. 1 team at the end of the regular season, received a bye to the semifinal round of the 2022 Isobel Cup Playoffs. In Sunday afternoon’s semifinal against the No. 5 Minnesota Whitecaps, four different Whale players — Kennedy Marchment, Janine Weber, Alyssa Wohlfeiler, and Tori Howran — scored in the 4-2 win, with all six goals coming in the second period.
“We really want more,” Weber said after the win against Minnesota. “Obviously we’re here for a reason. We’re in Florida but this could be anywhere and we’d have the same goal and approach it the same way. When it comes down to it, it’s the final and we’re going to play our game again. Play Whale hockey.”
— PHF (@PHF) March 27, 2022
In Sunday’s other semifinal, the No. 3 Boston Pride stormed the second-seeded Toronto Six. Up 3-1 at the end of the first period, the Pride went on to win 5-1.
The Pride also displayed depth in scoring, with five different players — Christina Putigna, Kali Flanagan, Kayla Friesen, Evelina Raselli, and Taylor Wenczkowski — all tallying goals. Even Pride goalie Katie Burt, who recorded 19 saves in the win against Toronto, notched an assist in the 5-1 win.
— PHF (@PHF) March 27, 2022
While hockey has taken center stage this weekend in Florida, there are still unanswered questions about the PHF’s silence regarding the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The Boston Pride (as well as the Toronto Six and Metropolitan Riveters) are owned and operated by BTM Partners, a company founded by John Boynton. In addition to serving as the chairman of the PHF’s Board of Governors, Boynton is also the chairman of Yandex, Russia’s largest technology company. Most Russians get their news via Yandex’s news aggregation site and the company — which has tight ties to the Kremlin — has been accused of suppressing factual information and promoting propaganda related to Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine. Earlier this month, Yandex executive director and deputy CEO Tigran Khudaverdyan was sanctioned by the European Union after he attended a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the same day that Russia invaded Ukraine.
On Her Turf reached out to both Boyton and the PHF for comment about Boynton’s role with Yandex, as well as the ongoing war in Ukraine. Boynton provided a statement about the PHF’s future, but did not address any of the questions about his role with Yandex or Russia’s war in Ukraine. The PHF did not reply to any of On Her Turf’s questions. You can read On Her Turf’s full story about this situation here.
The 2022 Isobel Cup Final gets underway on Monday night at 9:00pm ET on ESPN2 in the United States (TSN2 in Canada).
Follow Alex Azzi on Twitter @AlexAzziNBC