Erika Grahm was the first women's player to have full statistics added by Elite Prospects. (Harry How/Getty Images)
The CWHL and NWHL have helped establish a bigger women’s hockey fan base and following than ever before. To help meet the demand for knowledge about women’s hockey, Elite Prospects has begun to build a database for all the women’s players in the world, beginning with Sweden’s women’s elite league, Riksserien.
Women’s hockey is continually growing in popularity, thanks in large part to league’s such as the CWHL and the upstart NWHL, and Elite Prospects is keeping up with the addition of more than 700 women’s players to its database.
The hockey statistics website announced Tuesday that they are undertaking a massive project to add women’s players throughout the world, which began with Swedish winger and Olympian Erika Grahm, who plays club hockey for MODO in Riksserien, Sweden’s women’s elite league.
In an interview with Sweden’s Expressen, Grahm said it was a great honor being the first women’s player to have all her stats added .
“There are many who asked why we are not with (the men) and (I would have) really have liked to answer it,” Grahm told Expressen. “I wondered, too. But it is a step in the right direction.”
Being based in Sweden, Elite Prospects has also begun to add women’s leagues, which began with Riksserien. Like the men’s game, they’ve added everything from stats to free agents, even including players such as 14-year-old Wilma Carlsson, a Swedish blueliner who suited up in 19 games for Brynas in 2014-15.
Players such as U.S. Olympian Hilary Knight and Canadian Olympian Caroline Ouellette do have bios on the site, but Knight’s statistics don’t include her any statistics from international tournaments – not the Olympic games nor World Championships – and the same goes for Ouellette, whose stats only include one season with the CWHL’s Montreal Stars. But the database is still in the process of being filled out.
One legendary female player whose stats have been recently updated is Canada’s Hayley Wickenheiser. Fans of Wickenheiser can now see her full statistics, international, Canadian college and otherwise, through Elite Prospects.
There’s no suggested date when a more complete database will be found, but that Elite Prospects has undertaken this process is great for the game, and shows just how much women’s hockey has grown and how much demand there is to know more about the players.