Since the National Women’s Hockey League’s founding in 2015, three teams have partnered with their closest NHL franchises. Those partnerships include the Metropolitan Riveters with the New Jersey Devils, the Minnesota Whitecaps with the Minnesota Wild, and the Buffalo Beauts with the Buffalo Sabres.
Thursday morning, the Boston Pride became the fourth, teaming up with the Boston Bruins. The Bruins will assist the Pride financially and help grow women’s hockey in Massachusetts.
The Pride, whose roster includes Maryland native and Olympic gold medalist Haley Skarupa, will be at TD Garden tonight to support the Bruins and celebrate the new partnership.
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) January 10, 2019
The jewel of the new alliance is the Bruins Academy Girls Learn to Play program, with an enrollment cost of only $100. It includes a brand new set of CCM equipment and fitting, and a four-week instructional program held at the Philips Academy Rink, Warrior Ice Arena, The Bog Ice Arena, Murphy Memorial Skating Rink, and Veterans Memorial Skating Rink.
One of the big impacts of the collaboration is the Bruins ability to help market the Pride. “They’re helping get the word out there that we exist, where we play, how you can catch our games, and what the talent looks like within our team,” NWHL Deputy Commissioner Hayley Moore told Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic.
“Marketing goes a long way on our side. Any chance we have to plug into the NHL engine to get the word out there to those fans is outstanding. This will take things to a new level with us in Boston.”
“We also had many brand synergies, whether it was Dunkin’ Donuts, Warrior/New Balance or Warrior Ice Arena,” NWHL Commissioner Dani Rylan told Forbes. “Formalizing this partnership, I think, adds value to both of our properties as well as enhancing the partnerships that we both share.”
The Bruins have collaborated with the Pride before. The Bruins hosted the Winter Classic at Gillette Stadium against the Montreal Canadiens dubbed the “Outdoor Women’s Classic.” The Pride took on the Les Canadiennes de Montréal of the Canadian’s Women’s Hockey League. That game is unfortunately remembered most for the spinal injury suffered by Pride player Denna Laing.
Thanks to the new Boston teams partnership, the only NWHL team without an NHL affiliate is the Connecticut Whale, who boast goalie Sam Walther, the goalie who challenged Braden Holtby to buy her shirsey on Twitter after she bought his.
More from the Bruins:
BOSTON – The Boston Bruins announced today, January 10, that they have partnered with the Boston Pride of the National Women’s Hockey League to support and grow the game of women’s hockey in Massachusetts, as well as assist the Pride financially. This partnership will be highlighted by the new Bruins Academy Girls Learn to Play program, which will offer girls ages four through ten the opportunity to learn the basics of hockey led by Boston Pride players. The Bruins are the fourth NHL team to partner with a NWHL team.
The Bruins Academy Girls Learn to Play program will follow the same format as Bruins Academy Learn to Play offered by the Bruins each fall. The $100 registration fee includes a full set of brand-new CCM equipment to keep valued at $500 retail, a professional equipment fitting, and four weeks of on ice instruction led by certified coaches. The girl’s program will be held at five rinks beginning in March 2019: Philips Academy Rink in Andover, Warrior Ice Arena in Brighton, The Bog Ice Arena in Kingston, Murphy Memorial Skating Rink in South Boston, and Veterans Memorial Skating Rink in Waltham. Registration for this program opens on January 21 HERE.
The entire Boston Pride team will attend the Boston Bruins vs. Washington Capitals game on Thursday, January 10 at 7:00 p.m. to celebrate the partnership. Members of the Pride will participate in various elements throughout the game, and fans can visit the Boston Pride table on the TD Garden concourse to learn more about the team and the Girls Learn to Play program.
The Boston Bruins will be supporting the Boston Pride at their home game vs. Minnesota Whitecaps on Saturday, January 12 at 7:30 p.m. at Warrior Ice Arena. Bruins mascot Blades will be participating in the ceremonial puck drop. Tickets can be purchased at www.nwhl.zone.
“The Boston Pride are incredibly proud to join the rich history and competitive hockey family of the Boston Bruins,” said NWHL Deputy Commissioner Hayley Moore. “The Bruins’ commitment to advancing hockey across all levels aligns with what the NWHL stands for. We appreciate this partnership and their support in marketing and player development for the Pride, and we look forward to collaborating with the Bruins on a series of meaningful youth hockey initiatives.”
The Boston Bruins will host the third annual Girls Hockey Day on Friday, February 8 at TD Garden. The day will be highlighted by clinics involving Pride players and scrimmages for girls and women of all ages. More details will be released closer to the date.
Headline photo: @TheBostonPride
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