The PWHL Draft is June 10 at 7 pm Eastern Time in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The PWHL awards are the next day in the same location, and June 21 marks free agent day.

Teams will be able to sign free agents beginning on June 21, including players who do not get drafted. Between June 1 and the day free agency opens, teams will have an exclusive window to offer contract extensions to players they'd like to re-sign.

The draft order is:

  1. New York
  2. Ottawa
  3. Minnesota
  4. Boston
  5. Montréal
  6. Toronto

The order holds through all seven rounds as 42 players will be selected; however, unlike in the first draft, this one has trades:

For the full list of player declared for the draft go here:


The draft will stream on YouTube:

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This year's draft has some interesting veteran players, some number from Europe, a clutch of very exciting NCAA graduates and just about any other sort of hopeful you could name. I took a first pass through the list and identified the prospects with name recognition who are likely to be selected high in the draft order. Naturally a lot of these players are Canadians and Americans with national team play.

Obvious Blue Chip Prospects

I'm not going to pretend to rank these players, but I think there are a couple or three here who rise above the rest:

Hannah Bilka

Just 23, Bilka led Ohio State in points and has three years on Team USA at Worlds. She's a first-rounder for sure.

Britta Curl

A centre for the powerhouse University of Wisconsin team, Curl is also a three-time Team USA player at only 24. Another first-rounder

Sarah Fillier

Princeton's star, their captain, and the best Canadian in the draft, Fillier is a top-line Team Canada player at 23. She might not go first overall, but she won't be far behind.

Julia Gosling

From St. Lawrence University, Gosling has two years on Team Canada at the top level, and scored two very timely goals in this year's Worlds. She had great NCAA points totals, but is not quite at the level of Bilka or Fillier. She'll go pretty high in the draft, though.

Danielle Serdachny

After a great year at Colgate as their captain, Serdachny, 23, came up with some key goals for Team Canada in her second outing. I have this feeling she'll go to Toronto.

Noora Tulus

Not quite an aged veteran at only 28, Tulus is one of the best Finnish players in the game right now. She has been playing on the top team in the Swedish league for years, and is always on Team Finland. If she'd declared last year, she could well have been a pre-draft free agent signing. A winger, she's a goal scorer with speed and toughness. Yes, I want her in blue and white.

Cayla Barnes

Ohio State's top defender at 25, Barnes is very ready for the pro game. She did five years at Boston College before she changed schools and won the Frozen Four. She has been on Team USA at Worlds and Olympics going back to 2018. She might be the top defender in the draft. Certainly the best known.

Maja Nylén Persson

Nylén Persson is only 23, but she has played for Team Sweden at the top level since 2016. She might also be the best defender in the draft. She's an offensive threat, has been in the leadership group of her club team in the SDHL, and is the quintessential mobile, agile, puck moving defender in the modern style.

Claire Thompson

Re-declaring after visa issues kept her out this season, Thompson is reportedly taking a couple of years off school to play hockey. She's a high-end defender, but her last college year was 2020, and at 26, she has a lot less game experience lately than the competitors three years younger. It will be interesting to see how high she is rated and where she goes.

Klára Peslarová

The number one goalie for Team Czechia, Peslarová is a legitimate starter. The goalie pool of the PWHL just got deeper. It's no easier to judge goalies vs skaters in this league than any other, so I can't claim she'll go in the first round, but she won't be sitting all night either.

Less Obvious Choices

Now to the people I wasn't sure about and had to do a little digging on.

Jennifer Gardiner

Gardiner was a very good forward on Ohio State this year, but she's never been on Team Canada since the U18s a few years back. That hardly makes her a bad player, just a little hard to place, but no one is turning down the second highest in points behind Bilka on the championship team.

Dara Greig

A teammate of Danielle Serdachny, Greig is Canadian, but born in the USA. She was not quite at Serdachny's level, but is a good forward who was good at getting points. Mostly I want Toronto to draft her because she is Ridley's sister.

Sara Hjalmarsson

Hjalmarsson has all the bona fides you expect from a Swedish forward. She's captain of her team in the SDHL, she's been on Team Sweden for longer than seems reasonable when she's only 26, and she has a top NCAA college career in her past. I don't think she's as good at Tulus, but it's not far off.

Laura Kluge

Kluge is Team Germany, it seems sometimes. She is always one of their best players, but she plays her club games in Germany where she's one of the top players by points per game, but all the top players are on her team! She's very hard to place amongst the others here, and it will be mostly interesting to see if she's chosen at all.

Michelle Löwenhielm

Löwenhielm is 29, a veteran of Team Sweden going back years, but she's not one of their top players. She scored at almost a point per game in the SDHL, but Tulus, for example, was at 1.75. She seems like a potential depth player, and may have trouble cracking a lineup.

Alena Mills

Mills, 33, once the star of Team Czechia left the SDHL to play in Russia this season. That would have made her ineligible for the national team, I believe, but she announced her retirement from international play last June.

Daniela Pejšová

Team Czechia's top defender and SDHL veteran is somehow only 22 this summer. She's definitely one to watch.

Ronja Savolainen

Savolainen is a Team Finland defender of quality who has been playing in the SDHL of the top team for years with Tulus. Better, she turns 27 later this year, so is in her prime. She may deserve to go up in the obvious blue chippers list.

Raygan Kirk

Ohio State's number one goalie is the 23-year-old Canadian who won the championship. Her fabulous season was a huge improvement from the last two years, but goalie, so who knows.

Gwyneth Philips

Philips is American and led Northeastern with excellent results, which has been her norm for her entire NCAA career. She's never hit Team USA until this year, where she did not play, but did make the team. Like Kristen Campbell with Team Canada every year.

Kayle Osborne

Colgate's number one goalie by games played is also a Canadian, and also had a career year.


There's a few veterans I don't think will get taken. Noora Räty and Meeri Räisänen, Finland's tandem from a few years back are likely going to be seen as too old.

The interesting unknown here is Amanda Kessel, who did not declare last year, and worked in the front office for the Penguins. She's only missed this one year of hockey, and had nine goals in seven games for Team USA last year at Worlds. She's also only 32. But is she still a top level player? Or nearly? Someone will bet yes.

NCAA Graduates

There are a lot of NCAA players like Dara Greig who don't have national team experience or are on teams that didn't get buzz. Some of these players, all of whom have youth on their side, are bound to be good. That's what the team scouts are for.

If I've missed anyone obvious, please speak up!

Free Agents

Toronto has six players on deals that expire on June 21. They can re-sign those players between now and free agency. In the league's first year, they were required to sign six players to three-year deals. That rule does not hold for the subsequent years, but each team does have to hit an average salary prior to opening day of $56,650 on their 23 rostered players.

Toronto's known expiring free agents are:

  • Brittany Howard
  • Allison Munroe
  • Rebecca Leslie
  • Hannah Miller
  • Alexa Vasko
  • Erica Howe

Toronto also signed some players out of training camp and no term was released. They are likely expiring free agents as well. Note: Jess Jones has been both a rostered and reserve player as she was in and out for injured forwards.

  • Olivia Knowles
  • Kaitlin Willoughby
  • Samantha Cogan
  • Jess Jones
  • Lauriane Rougeau
  • Carly Jackson
  • Maude Poulin-Labelle
  • Victoria Bach

Now you're ready for the draft and free agency. Read the CBC article linked above for more information about the PWHL's plans for development, team names and venues, and a host of other things.

On the topic of development: