Toronto To Welcome NWHL’s Sixth Franchise (First In Canada) Next Season


Apr 22, 2020

The National Women’s Hockey League just grew one team larger.

The league announced Wednesday that it is adding a sixth team in Toronto — the first Canadian NWHL team — ahead of its sixth season. The ownership is led by former Harvard captain Johanna Neilson Boynton, while Tyler Tumminia will be the club’s chairman and Digit Murphy has been named president.

“… Our city has a rich history with professional women’s hockey and we are excited to begin this next chapter with the NWHL,” Toronto Mayor John Troy said. “I hope that this team achieves success and longevity in our city and that this team will serve as an inspiration for young girls to pursue careers in professional sports.”

The team name, color and designs have yet to be determined. But the leadership team already has its sights set on a strong run next season.

“We aspire to build a perennial Isobel Cup contender for Toronto,” Boynton said. “This will be an organization with strong fan, community and corporate support, outstanding coaching, training, and player development, and a club dedicated to promoting hockey as a game for everyone.

“Although this pandemic is challenging everyone in profound ways today, and we are very mindful of that, our outlook for women’s sports remains positive. We are launching this team now because we believe in the future.”

They aren’t the only ones who believe in the future. Five players already have committed to be a part of the team, including Kristen Barbara, Elaine Chuli, Emma Greco, Taylor Woods and Shiann Darkangelo — a member of the U.S. National Team originally from Michigan.

The last team to join the NWHL was the Minnesota Whitecaps in 2018. The league was founded with four teams in 2015: Buffalo Beauts, Connecticut Whale, Metropolitan (NY-NJ) Riveters and, of course, the Boston Pride.

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Thumbnail photo via Rob Schumacher/USA TODAY Sports Images
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