The 2021 IIHF Women’s World Championship comes to a close Tuesday in
Calgary, as does a rollercoaster ride that has lasted more than 18 months;
the tournament – originally scheduled for Halifax, N.S., was cancelled in
March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and then again in April of this
year with cases rising in Nova Scotia.
Fans watching on TSN see the action on the ice, but the action behind the
scenes – especially this year in a bubble environment – is a major part of
welcoming the world to what is one of the major events on the international
“This has been an unbelievable journey, persevering through a continuing
global pandemic and a pair of cancellations to host a women’s worlds that
we are so proud of,” said Dean McIntosh, vice-president of events and
properties for Hockey Canada. “This tournament is about so much more than
the 12 days of hockey at WinSport Arena; it is about the efforts of event
staff, players, coaches, officials and volunteers who should be so proud of
what they have accomplished.”
So what exactly goes into – and comes out of – hosting the women’s worlds,
in the summer, with four months notice, after two cancellations? Let’s take
a look at the numbers:
Paid attendance for the 2021 IIHF Women’s World Championship. Due to the
ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, all 31 tournament games were played without
fans, although a very limited number of family and friends were allowed in
Points for tournament leader Mélodie Daoust, just the fourth double-digit
performance by a Canadian since 2007 (Hayley Wickenheiser put up 10 points
in 2012, Marie-Philip Poulin had 12 en route to MVP honours in 2013, and
Natalie Spooner totalled 10 in 2019).
Officials who worked the 2021 IIHF Women’s World Championship, representing
seven countries – Canada (7), United States (7), Finland (2), Russia (2),
Sweden (2), Austria (1), Switzerland (1)
Media availabilities done through Zoom from Aug. 16, the first day teams
were out of quarantine, through the semifinals. This includes IIHF press
conferences with both teams after each game, and availabilities done by
Canada’s National Women’s Team prior to games, after practices and on
Staff in the bubble for TSN and RDS to broadcast every preliminary-round
and playoff-round game at women’s worlds for the first-time ever. This
includes everyone from play-by-play announcers Rod Black and Kenzie Lalonde
to production runners, camera operators and fibre-optic technicians.
Goals scored through the semifinals, by 74 different players. The highest
single-game total came in the United States’ 10-2 win over Japan in the
quarterfinals, while the lowest were a pair of 1-0 games – Japan’s victory
over Denmark in the preliminary round, and Finland’s 1-0 triumph over the
Czech Republic in the quarterfinals
Accredited media representing all 10 competing nations. Not surprisingly,
Canadian media comprised the largest delegation – 70 media from 41
different media outlets.
Players who dressed for at least one game. Denmark, Germany and ROC were
the only teams that had all of their rostered players see game action.
Scrapes during TV timeouts by the volunteer ice crew. At the first whistle
after the six-minute, 10-minute and 14-minute marks of each period, a team
of eight skaters cleared snow in front of both nets and around the edge of
Individuals who were permanently inside the bubble from the arrival of
teams on Aug. 10. That does not include WinSport Arena and hotel staff who
worked inside the bubble, but were not permanent inhabitants.
Hours spent in the bubble by the top six teams; players and staff arrived
to begin quarantine on Aug. 10, were on the ice for their first practices
on Aug. 16, skated in pre-tournament play on Aug. 18 and dropped the puck
to open the tournament on Aug. 20.
Accreditations issued, which includes all players, team staff, officials,
volunteers, Hockey Canada staff, International Ice Hockey Federation staff
and venue staff at WinSport Arena.
Social media posts related to the women’s worlds sent across all Hockey
Canada platforms (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) from Aug. 20-30. The posts
– in English and French – earned 16,364,321 impressions and 474,672
Days between Halifax and Truro, N.S., being awarded the 2020 IIHF Women’s
World Championship (Oct. 30, 2018) and the gold medal game between Canada
and the United States in Calgary (Aug. 31, 2021). The tournament was first
cancelled March 7, 2020, and then again on April 21, 2021.
Minutes of hockey played through the end of the semifinals. Only one game
has gone beyond 60 minutes – Switzerland’s come-from-behind 3-2 win over
ROC in the quarterfinals.
COVID-19 tests performed on players, team staff, Hockey Canada staff,
International Ice Hockey Federation staff, TSN and volunteers from the
start of the pre-screening period on Aug. 1 through Aug. 29.
Towels used by teams and officials during the 2021 IIHF Women’s World
Championship. To comply with COVID-19 protocols, each towel was used only
once and then laundered.
Volunteer hours worked to help the tournament run behind the scenes. The
volunteer group included 60 individuals; of those, 30 were inside the
bubble as part of the transportation, team services and off-ice officials
groups. At a typical women’s worlds in Canada, the volunteer team would
total more than 300.
Litres of water consumed by players and officials during the women’s worlds
– that works out to just over 31 litres per player/official over the
duration of the tournament.
Cups of Tim Hortons coffee consumed inside the bubble since Aug. 16.
Photos taken by Hockey Canada Images photographer Matthew Murnaghan. They
included on-ice action, Team Canada headshots, behind-the-scenes exclusives
and partner activations.
Page views at HockeyCanada.ca from Aug. 20-30. Traffic to IIHF Women’s
World Championship pages totalled 733,923 views, or 70.9% of all web
Dollar total for the 50/50 draws for all six Team Canada game days through
the end of the semifinals, with half the proceeds ($744,335) going to the
Hockey Alberta Foundation to support women’s hockey initiatives in the