In April 2017, Rob Vollman tweeted out what he called “rough and preliminary” translation factors for women’s hockey. At the time, I was playing around with counting stats from two years of NWHL and CWHL hockey, and wanted to develop as many tools and resources as I could to better understand the women’s game. Curious to know what the competitive landscape of post-collegiate hockey looked like in North America and elsewhere, I began to keep track of data with the intention of building on Rob’s translation factors.
The world of women’s hockey in North America has changed dramatically in the three years since Rob’s tweet. My initial plans went up in smoke when the CWHL suddenly folded after the 2018-19 season. As a result, I shifted my focus to developing NWHL equivalency factors – or NWHLe – for NCAA DI, NCAA DIII, and USports. Unfortunately, it quickly became apparent that the sample size of USports alumnae to play a significant number of games in the NWHL was too small to work with.