U.S. Women's Hockey Team hosting Canada Dec. 20 at Xcel Energy Center

The U.S. Women's Hockey Team will host Canada on Dec. 20 at Xcel Energy Center, Minnesota Wild owner Craig Leipold announced on Tuesday in Blaine.

Minnesota Wild owner Craig Leipold announced on Tuesday from the Schwan Super Rink in Blaine that the U.S. Women’s National Team will play Canada on Dec. 20 at Xcel Energy Center.

Leipold was joined at Tuesday’s announcement by USA Hockey Executive Director Pat Kelleher, 1998 Olympic gold medalist Karyn Bye and USA coach Joel Johnson, who is the new women’s hockey coach at the University of St. Thomas.

"We’re excited to be in Saint Paul and bring the sport’s greatest rivalry to the State of Hockey," Kelleher said. "With our women’s team based in Blaine at the Super Rink in preparation for the Games, it seems only appropriate we conclude the U.S. portion of the My Why Tour in the Twin Cities."

Team USA is using the Super Rink in Blaine as its home base in preparing for the upcoming Olympic Winter Games. Team USA officials have invited 27 players to the U.S. residency program in Blaine. They will train together, starting this month, and leading up to the 2022 Winter Games.

Players will also compete on the My Why Tour, a series of games which lead up to the Olympics and will be held in Beijing from Feb. 3-20. Team USA will select a final roster of 23 players, which will be announced in late December or early January.

The current roster of 27 invitees features eight players from the University of Minnesota, and six Minnesota natives.

Tickets for the Dec. 20 game between Team USA and Team Canada at Xcel Energy Center go on sale Oct. 15. Team USA is going for its second straight gold medal at the 2022 Winter Olympics. Team USA beat Canada 3-2 in a shootout to win the gold medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics.