Many people in the hockey world have heard of Sidney Crosby. He’s a hockey all-star, Canadian Olympic hero, and a future hall of famer. What if I told you that Canada is lucky enough to also be home to a woman who some say is women’s’ hockey equivalent? I am of course, speaking of our articles namesake, Marie-Philip Poulin.
Read on to hear what amazing accomplishments this young woman has achieved before even being on this earth for 3 decades!
A French-Canadian female prodigy is born
Marie-Philip Poulin was born in Beauceville, Quebec on March 29, 1991. She tried figure skating at the age of four, but wasn’t a big fan.
Thankfully for us and the sport of hockey in general, Marie-Philip wanted to be just like her big brothers playing hockey, so she gave it a shot at the age of five, and luckily it stuck! Over the next decade she grew up as a typical hockey playing Canadian, and as her skills surpassed her peers, at the age of 16 she moved to Montreal to play in a higher level female AA league.
Despite only playing 16 games that season and being a rookie, she finished as the runner up for the CWHL most valuable player award. This was a clear sign of things to come and would be a trend for the rest of her career.
A teenag Marie-Philip Poulin storms onto the hockey world stage
At the age of 16, Marie-Philip played in her first international contest, suiting up for the Team Canada girls U-18 team for a 3 game exhibition. As expected, she dominated the tournament putting up four goals and one assist.
Only a few short years later, Poulin made her debut as the youngest member of the Vancouver 2010 women’s olympic squad, and she potted five goals and added two assists in the tournament en route to being nominated as a tournament all star. Even more key, she scored both goals in Canada’s back and forth battle with the USA in the gold medal game.
Poulin played like a seasoned vet and carried team Canada on her shoulders. It was likely one of the best Olympic hockey tournaments for a teeager in the history of the sport, male or female!
Boston University and the NCAA
Marie-Philip chose in 2010 to head off to school and join the highly acclaimed Boston University NCAA hockey program. Although BU has fallen off a bit in recent years in terms of NCAA rankings, in Poulin’s day she helped them achieve four consecutive Hockey East Championships, and they appeared in the ‘Frozen Four’ finals multiple times.
Poulin served as the assistant captain for one year, and Captained the team in her final two years at BU en route to obtaining a degree in psychology! Wow.
Marie-Philip Poulin dominates the Olympics in her 20’s
Fast forward a few years later, and Mari-Philip is back at the Olympics again, this time in Sochi, Russia. I can vividly remember this tournament to this day. While the Canadian men breezed through to a gold medal, the Women had a huge task in front of them, with the United States matching them tit for tat.
The Canada USA matchup in the finals was one of the best hockey games I have ever watched. The USA arguably dominated for most of the game, but in typical Marie-Philip Poulin fashion, she took the game into her own hands again.
Tying the game with 55 seconds remaining and scoring the overtime winner, her name should be under the definition of ‘clutch’. In a game that the USA had the upper hand in most of the way, she single-handedly clawed Canada back into the game and eventually to victory. If you haven’t seen this game before, I highly suggest finding a replay!
Poulin of course played again for Canada in 2018 in PyeongChang, China. She managed to score three goals and notched three assists, but this year it was finally the USA’s turn to claim victory, with Canada having to settle for a silver medal.
The late 2010’s and beyond
Marie-Philip Poulin in the last half decade has played in various professional hockey leagues, as women’s pro hockey continue to try and get a good foothold. She is definitely a big attraction for the game and should be commended for her role in helping grow women’s hockey to the level it is currently at and inspiring the post-COVID-19 generation of younger players. Like Haley Wickenheiser and Cassie Campbell before her, she helps push women’s hockey forward to this day.
But the story isn’t over for Poulin. At the age of 29, she has many great years ahead of her. In fact, she was just recently voted by her male peers in the NHL as the best women’s hockey player in the world!
TSN also included her as the second line center on their All-Time Canadian Women’s team, just barely being edged out by Hayley Wickenheiser for the starting job. But who knows – In the next 10 years maybe those spots will be switched!
Conclusions on Marie-Philiip Poulin
Marie-Philip is currently a Bauer sponsored athlete, meaning she has the access to the best Bauer hockey sticks, and all the new lightest hockey skates they come out with. They make sure she has the top technologies to help aid her in staying on top of the female hockey world!
Thanks to the team over at Goingbardown.com for writing up this article on Marie-Philip Poulin!
Top photo via hockeyMedia / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)