Every time there is a major women's sporting event or tournament it seems that some journalist pipes in with the "it's women so it isn't as good" tirade. Andy Benoit of Sports Illustrated was one of the most recent and tweeted during the Women's World Cup of soccer that women's sports in general were "not worth watching."
Women's sports are worth watching. For the most part, whatever game you're watching, the difference between watching the dudes and watching the ladies is that you know the names of the dudes. At the end of the day, it's all sports, it's exciting and stop pretending to be such a badass by putting women down.
Looking to hockey, our subject, there are some differences between women's hockey and the men's game. The slapshots aren't as hard, there is very little hitting, almost no fighting and overall the game is slightly slower and played by smaller people. At the same time though, it's the same game. The black rubber disk is on ice and five skaters try to score while one stays back in heavy padding and tries to keep the rubber disk away from the twine.
If you're not sold on watching yet, let me elucidate one of the best parts of the women's game. At the end of the contest, both teams, the winners and the loser, take of their helmets and male fans get to play a game called "hey, check out the unbelievable babe who was just pushing the rubber around the rink." Yes, there are some perfect tens playing hockey and there have been for years. Here is our take on the top twenty hottest female hockey players in the game right now.
20 Valentina Wallner
There are a few hot goalies on this list and the first we'll drool over is Swede Valentina Wallner. Her international career started back in 2008 when she was a member of the under-18 team. She would later join the Swedish national women's squad for two Women's World Championships and has played for several teams in Swedish leagues. While she doesn't have that blond-hair/blue eyes thing many people associate with Swedish women, anyone complaining can be safely be ignored.
19 Alexandra Vafina
We'll start our list off with one of the prettiest forwards the Russian women's national team has to offer. Alexandra Vafina has been a member of the team since 2008, appearing in five World Championships and an under-18 championship back in 2008. She currently plays for the University of Calgary Dinos, of the Canadian Inter-university Sport league.
18 Jessica Campbell
The first of a few Canadians on this list is forward Jessica Campbell, who has played for the Canadian national women's team, the Cornell Big Red, and has been playing for the Calgary Inferno in the Canadian Women's Hockey League for the past two seasons. She has represented Canada on the national women's team in a few events, most recently the 2015 World Championship, in which she brought home a silver medal.
17 Ivonne Schroeder
Remember when that awesome writer Chris mentioned more hot goalies? Well, he's nothing if not an honest fan of hot hockey players. Ivonne Schroeder is 27 years old now and has been competing in German professional leagues since 2007, and has represented the country twice in international events. Standing 5'10 with cute blue eyes, we're comfortable saying we'd let her play goalie on our team.
16 Florence Schelling
We're on a roll with hot goalies right now, so let's keep the trend going. Schelling has tended the pipes for Switzerland's national women's team for three Olympics (2006, 2010 and 2014) bringing home the bronze in Sochi.
She played four years with Northeastern University and was drafted a couple of years ago by the Montreal Stars of the Canadian Women's Hockey League.
15 Monique and Jocelyne Lamoureux
Why list twins in the same entry? Because they are teammates, sisters and it's hotter this way. Don't worry about it, just enjoy the pretty blondes. These two are from North Dakota and have played for the American women's national team since 2009. They've won four gold medals in that tournament and two Olympic silver medals at Vancouver and Sochi.
14 Kelly Terry
From Whitby, Ontario, Canada, Kelly Terry is a doll-faced blonde who has played collegiate level hockey for the Minnesota Golden Gophers and the Toronto Furies of the Canadian Women's Hockey League. The gorgeous forward was selected to play with Canada's national team back in October 2014 and is intent on keeping that status until the next Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. We hope she can too, because we can't get enough of babes with her advanced level of cute.
13 Erika Grahm
Swedish forward Erika Grahm has played a couple of years in the Swedish elite women's league, the Riksserien, as well as for the University of Minnesota Duluth, and of course for the Swedish national team. While we're fine with her firing pucks around on the ice, she has the kind of face that would not be out of place in the modeling business. If we faced her in a game of pick-up hockey, we'd probably be too distracted by that smile to be able to play any defense. Its a clever strategy.
12 Bailey Bram
Looking back to the ladies of Canada's national team, Winnipeg-born stunner Bailey Bram has played on two silver medal World Championship teams and a single gold medal winning team. Outside of international competition, she played for Mercyhurst University for four years and averaged well over a point per game. She's also played a couple of seasons in the CWHL with the Brampton Thunder and the Calgary Inferno.
11 Eveliina Suonpaa
We've said it before, but we'll say it again, and repeat until we're sick of hearing the words, there are some hot goalies in women's hockey. Now 20 years old, Suonpaa has played for an elite league in Finland, the Finnish under-18 team in 2013 and the national team for the 2015 World Championship, in which she took home a bronze medal. Like a couple of others on this wonderful list, she currently attends and plays for the University of Minnesota Duluth. There are some lucky guys at that school.
10 Amanda Kessel
If you're not familiar with the world of the U.S. ladies' national team, NHL star Phil Kessel's little was, until recently, one of their top forwards. She recently chose to retire from hockey while playing for the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers, due to concerns over concussions. She got hit hard during the Sochi Olympics and became concerned that she would suffer serious health problems if she were to continue to play and risk another serious blow to the head. Moving away from health issues and back to the theme of this article, while her brother looks like he binges on cheeseburgers (sorry Phil), Amanda is a total Wisconsinite fox.
9 Halli Krzyzaniak
Hailing from beautiful Brandon, Manitoba, Canada, Halli "Don't try to pronounce my last name" Krzyzaniak is one of the loveliest gems on the Canadian women's national hockey team right now. The defense-woman became skilled at the game because while it's a delightful place to live, there isn't much else to do in Brandon, Manitoba. She won gold with the Canadian under-18 team in 2012 and since 2013, has been playing for the University of North Dakota.
8 Susanna Tapani
She currently plays for HPK in the highest women's league in Finland. Left winger Susanna Tapani has also won two bronze medals with the Finnish women's national teams at the 2011 and 2015 World Championships. She played in the 2014 Sochi Olympics and briefly played for the University of North Dakota. Aside from being good at hockey, she's beautiful and plays ringette when the ice melts.
7 Viona Harrer
Houston, we have a cutie. Actually, let every city know about this. German goalie Viona Harrer looks like the kind of girl you see at a bar sipping a beer a few tables over who starts giggling when you inadvertently make eye contact. Well, that's how our dreams usually start anyway. She's been playing competitive hockey for ten years now, has played not only for the women's national team, but has also played in a professional men's league.
6 Emerance Maschmeyer
So, good news/bad news time, dear readers. The good news is, we have another hot goalie. The bad news is, we only have a couple left. It reminds me of that old joke from The Simpsons when the town drunk Barney Gumble shouts at Homer, "I'm worried about the beer supply! After this case, and the next case, we only have one case left!!" This is how we feel about hot goaltenders at this point.
While her last name may make her sound like the captain of the German team, Maschmayer tends the pipes for Team Canada. She has earned medals in an under-18 World Championship and at the 2015 World Championship in Sweden. In case you're wondering why she's on this list and haven't checked out the picture above yet, does the phrase intimidatingly pretty eyes mean anything to you?
5 Tanja Eisenschmid
A gorgeous dirty-blonde from Kaufbeuren, German, 22 year old Tanja Eisenschmid has been a member of the national team since 2013, and like our next beautiful entry on this flawless list, plays for the University of North Dakota women's hockey team. She hasn't won any medals with her National Team yet, but she's won a valuable spot on this list.
4 Hilary Knight
I'll apologize to all Americans that your top hottie is not number one. She's close, and if this were an article about best female hockey players in the world, she'd probably be number one. With five World Championship golds to her name since 2008 and two silver medals at the 2010 and 2014 Olympics, Hilary Knight has been one of the most impressive of the past decade. Not only is she absurdly skilled though, she, like so many on this list is hot enough to make some models jealous.
3 Angelina Goncharenko
A twenty-one year old Moscow native who has played defense for the Russian national team at two World Championships and an Olympics has claimed our number three spot and our hearts. Okay, fair enough, the whole list has claimed our hearts, they're all amazing. She currently plays for Moscow's team in the Russian Women's Hockey League. She won a bronze medal with the national team back in 2013 at the World Championship but did not register a point in that tournament. Standing 5'10, she has a great pair of legs to match her striking eyes.
2 Meeri Raisanen
Another gem who has played goalie for the Finnish national team is our number two and she, like the other Fins on this list, is a testament to the stereotype that all Scandinavian women are blonde bombshells. I'll spoil number one for you right now by the way, she's another goalie.
Twenty-five year old Raisanen played for Robert Morris University just outside of Pittsburgh until 2011, and more recently has been active in Jääkiekon naisten SM-sarja, the Finnish women's professional league in addition to the national team. I'd like to say more but do I really need to?
1 Anna Prugova
There was never a real contest for number one here. The rest of the list are hotties, but Russian goalie Anna Prugova is so obscenely beautiful that she is a full step above the rest. She started playing for the Russian national team back in 2010 and has been dropping jaws ever since. No matter what body part you're most fond of, she's perfect, with a stunning face and all the rest. Back in 2010, she was the youngest woman in the Olympic women's hockey tournament. As I've said before, I can read about hot women all day and if we've missed your favorite hockey babe we welcome their name in the comments section, but if you disagree with Prugova being our number one, that's your problem, dear reader.