There have been previous attempts to launch a professional league for the best women skaters in the world—the stars we've all watched at the Olympics, who have had to work second and third jobs to keep their careers going. Those attempts have all failed.
In the hopes of finally, at long last, securing a stable league, with real funding and actual, professional treatment (long lacking in other women's leagues) some of the game's best players formed an association first, and only then went looking for a league to play in. This year, they got it. And the early returns have been incredible. This is the story of the long road to a real women's league, and why this time, really, is different.