The twins were of the stars of this year's Winter Olympics. In the gold medal hockey win over Canada, Monique scored a late goal in regulation to tie the score and Jocelyne scored the winning goal in the shootout.
Count the Lamoureux twins among those who think Seattle getting an NHL team is a good idea.
“You’ve seen in (Las) Vegas, I think they had less than 100 youth hockey players last year and now I believe they are up to 7,500,” said Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson, who with her identical twin Monique Lamoureux-Morando, helped lead the U.S. women’s hockey team to a gold medal in February. “If you can get an NHL team in a non-traditional hockey market, that’s probably the best way to grow youth hockey numbers, for boys and girls, in any community.”
The twins were in Seattle on Monday as part of their new job with Comcast, where they are serving as ambassadors and spokeswomen for the company’s corporate values initiatives. They were two of the stars of the past Olympics, playing huge roles in the Americans’ 3-2 win over Canada in a shootout.
It was the third Olympics for the twins, and in the first two they had to settle for silver medals after losing to Canada in the final. It looked like that might happen again, but Monique scored a late goal in regulation to tie the score and Jocelyne scored the winning goal in the shootout.
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“After we won — we don’t normally hug a whole lot — we embraced and gave each other a big hug,” Monique said. “Our goal was always to be Olympic champions and to be able to accomplish that together, and being a part of that journey together — it always made it unique in that aspect — that was always the dream.”
One of the issues close to the twins is gender equity. They and their U.S. national team teammates were set to boycott the 2017 World Championships while seeking equal treatment with the U.S. men’s hockey team. They agreed to a new deal three days before the championships, one that paid players beyond just the six-month Olympic period. So the U.S. women played, and won the world title.
“Gender inequality is not just a female problem,” Monique said. “It’s everyone’s problem and we need to get everyone talking about these issues. It’s not going to get fixed unless everyone is working toward building equality across the board.
“Within our sport of hockey, we want young girls to see that they can do whatever they dream of. Them being a female shouldn’t limit their opportunities, and what they want to accomplish. And I think we’ve shown that by what our team has been able to accomplish the last two years, and hopefully we can inspire young girls to do more of the same.”
The twins think it would be good to have one unified pro women’s league, rather than the two there are: the National Women’s Hockey League and the Canadian Women’s Hockey League. But the twins, 29, are not playing. They are both pregnant, about seven weeks apart. Their long-term goal is to play in their fourth Olympics in 2022.
It would be hard, however, to top the feelings they had winning their first Olympic gold earlier this year in South Korea.
Now they have a bigger platform for speaking about the gender inequity that they say still exists in their sport.
“I would say we still have a long ways to go, across the board, on how the women’s team is treated,” Jocelyne said. “The funding that goes into the boys program is not equal to what is going into the girls program. Yes, we signed a contract over a year and half ago now, and that’s a step in the right direction but we still have a long ways to go. It’s not going to change overnight but we’re hoping the conversation continues to change the culture.”