The 2022 Isobel Cup Playoffs of the Premier Hockey Federation are heading to Florida in March. It will mark the first time that the women’s hockey league will play outside of its franchise areas.
The Isobel Cup Playoffs will be held at AdventHealth Center Ice, Wesley Chapel (Florida), March 25-28. It houses events such as The 2017 Four Nations Cup, and the 2021 NHL Prospect Showcase.
All six PHF teams will be traveling to Florida for the three day tournament. On Friday, March 25, the four lowest playoff seeded teams will compete in a preliminary round. The winners are then scheduled to face the first and second highest seeds on Sunday, February 27. All these games will be broadcast on ESPN+, the U.S. exclusive home for the PHF regular-season.
The Isobel Cup's championship game will be played on Monday, March 28th at 9 PM. ET and will air on ESPN2 — the first linear broadcast of professional women's hockey games.
Tyler Tumminia (PHF Commissioner) stated that the idea for a “neutral location” Isobel Cup began in 2021. The National Women's Hockey League, then called the League, attempted to hold its season at Lake Placid because of concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic. This failed because of multiple outbreaks and the playoffs were completed at Boston's Warrior Arena.‘ practice rink. The Cup was won again by Boston Pride.
“I was passionate about it. The playoffs have the advantage of leveling the playing field for all teams. However, I feel that they should be something special. Tumminia said that having a playoffs destination gives athletes an extra drive. “And I'm sure that they won't be complaining about the cold.” I know that I'm not.”
Tumminia acknowledged the fact that bringing the PHF playoffs into Florida “isn't cheap”, but that it is “definitely” something the Board of Governors, and I believe in to increase excitement about these playoffs.
The league had been in negotiations with the NHLfor some time, but couldn't make it work out. Tumminia said, “Our mindset was already in Florida so we were already talking to a lot of other people.”
During their Lake Placid playoffs last season, the PHF had a sponsorship partnership “HerStory: A Virtual Women's Sports Museum”. AdventHealth Center Ice is home to the interactive museum. This includes information about 2018 Olympic women's medal team. Gordie Zimmerman, CEO of the facility, collaborated with the PHF to bring Florida's playoffs to Florida.
“Hosting USA Hockey's Women's Nationals each Spring has led to an exponential rise in the number of female hockey players in our leagues as well as in the sport overall. Zimmerman said that the PHF championship will only increase excitement and participation.
Tumminia reported that the PHF was in talks with Lightning regarding having the Isobel Cup winning team attend their home match against the Lightning.March 29, 2009.