Sunday Scroll: Making the whole rink *shimmer*

Everything you need to know about the PWHL playoffs ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌
Sunday Scroll
From The GIST Team

It all comes down to this!

One sweep and one reverse sweep later, the best-of-five PWHL Finals is officially set with No. 3 Boston facing No. 4 Minnesota, an all-American battle between two never-quiet squads. Here’s everything you need to know before the chase for the championship begins tonight.

Quote of The Day
Quote There are people in the bar crying as @PWHL_Minnesota clinches their spot in the @thepwhlofficial Championship Series. THIS is what happens when you invest in women. #EveryoneWatchesWomensSports
The A Bar of Their Own logo

— The soon-to-be Minnesota-based women’s sports bar @abaroftheirown X account, reflecting on this impactful moment in women’s hockey. There is crying when women’s hockey is finally getting its due.

The Scroll

✏️ The setup

Jamie Lee Rattray #47 of Boston takes a shot past Denisa Křížová #41 of Minnesota
Source: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

With the regular season and two thrilling semis series in the books, Boston and Minnesota are the last two squads standing from the six-team field.

Just like the semifinals, the finals series will be best-of-five, with the better seed (Boston) hosting Games 1, 2 and (if necessary) 5 and Minnesota hosting Games 3 and (if necessary) 4.

  • The same postseason rules apply with the trophy on the line: if the game is tied after the three 20-minute periods, the teams will play 15-minute sudden death overtime (OT) periods until one team scores. Stressful in the best way.

🟩 No. 3 seed Boston

Susanna Tapani and PWHL Boston celebrate after clinching a spot in the finals
Source: PWHL Boston/Twitter

How they got here: Faith, trust, and pixie dust — kidding, but it did take some late-season magic for Boston to even reach the playoffs. Their postseason hopes looked all but dashed coming out of the February international break, but Boston defied the odds by winning four of their last five regular-season games.

  • And that grit extended to the playoffs, where Boston swept No. 2 Montréal by winning not one, not two, but three (!!!) feisty OT battles. No quit in this squad.

Players to watch: It all starts with goaltender Aerin “green monster” Frankel, who boasts an astounding .972 save percentage in the postseason, not to mention two games with over 50 saves. Boston entered the playoffs as the lowest scoring team, but it’s been no matter for Frankel and her heroics.

  • The other name to know is Susanna Tapani (who was notably traded from Minnesota to Boston in January). The Finnish forward netted two of Boston’s OT game-winners vs. Montréal, including the goal that punched their Finals ticket. She’s so golden.

Key to success: Keep things close. Boston’s proven thrice over that they can win when the pressure’s on. In fact, they had the most one-goal wins of any team this season. If Frankel can keep them in it (as she’s done all playoffs long), watch for Boston’s clutch scorers (aka Team USA captain Hilary Knight and Swiss star Alina Müller) to come through in a big way.

🟪 No. 4 seed Minnesota

PWHL Minnesota celebrates after clinching a finals berth
Source: PWHL Minnesota/X

How they got here: After enjoying success early in the regular season, Minnesota came sputtering into the playoffs on a five-game losing streak. And that trend continued early in their semis with Toronto as they were shut out in Games 1 and 2.

Players to watch: Who else but captain Kendall Coyne Schofield, who has two points this postseason, including a critical assist in Minnesota’s series-clinching victory. Schofield’s signature scoring has dipped a bit in the postseason, but her veteran presence (and speed) has been crucial for this young Minnesota squad.

  • And in between the pipes, Minnesota’s semis turnaround came with Maddie Rooney (.979 save percentage) holding it down, despite Nicole Hensley handling the bulk of the action in the regular season. Time will tell how they manage the goalie tandem in the ’ship.

Key to success: Ride the momentum…and the power play strength. From a seven-game losing streak to a three-game heater, it’s been a rollercoaster stretch for Minnesota. But they’re flying high heading into the finals, partially thanks to a power play unit that came alive in Game 5.

  • They’ll have to capitalize, especially against a Boston team that’s struggled with their penalty kill.

📺 How to tune in

Minnesota forward Taylor Heise (27) watches the puck she just shot sail into an empty net for a goal during the third period of a PWHL game between Minnesota and Boston on March 13, 2024, at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN. (
Source: Nick Wosika/Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

A rematch of both teams' season-openers, this historic finals matchup is sure to be a doozy — Boston and Minnesota met five times in the regular season, with Boston holding a narrow 3-2 series edge.

  • The puck drops on Game 1 this evening at 5 p.m. ET with all the finals action airing on TSN for Canadian viewers and on the league’s YouTube channel for those not in the Great White North. Walter Cup winner, incoming.
The GIST's Picks

Here’s what (else) has GIST HQ buzzing:

🏆 What to watch

This video offering a closer look at the Tiffany & Co.–crafted Walter Cup and all of the trophy’s sparkling details. Making the whole rink shimmer.

🛍️ What to shop

The PWHL merch store which is chock-full of inaugural season gear, including the coveted purple PWHL beanie.

🏒 What to listen to

Our podcast The GIST of It, where co-hosts and women’s hockey lovers Ellen Hyslop and Steph Rotz will keep you up-to-date as the playoffs roll on. Doing that hockey.

We know (okay hope) you love The GIST and want to share it with all of the people in your life. And, we want to reward you for it. Here's how to share:

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