Poulin sounds off on NWHL growth:

Team Canada captain thinks little women must dream of playing in a league that the PWHPA envisions. 2:15

Hefford pictures a day when the top gamers on the planet earn enough to pay for lease, food and other routine expenditures.

"We want a living wage," she said. "The females understand they're not going to make countless dollars. It's not about that.

"It's about infrastructure, facilities for day-time training, full-time training personnel, insurance, and other things. An office, marketing resources, ticketing departments-- these things are crucial to the survival of any league."

NHL participation important

Prior to her November induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame, Hayley Wickenheiser predicted an intense future for women's hockey that would consist of all those things.

"I think the NHL has a strategy progressing," said Wickenheiser. "If females's professional hockey is going to occur, it's going to need to be with NHL involvement.

"I see it as possible: four to 6 groups probably based in the eastern part of Canada and in the U.S., simply for cash and location. And I believe it'll happen. I actually believe it will occur within the next year or more."

VIEW Missing from Wednesday's statement was a recommendation from the National Hockey League or comment from the Toronto Maple Leafs. Established in 2015, the NWHL ended up being North America's first pro ladies's league to pay its gamers a salary. The rival Canadian Women's Hockey League folded last year after 12 seasons due to financial instability. The NHL continues to signify its intent to support, develop and back the ladies's video game. "History tells us the only women's leagues that survive are aligned with established males's leagues.