Jamie Lee Rattray isn’t a major name outside of women’s hockey circles just yet.
But it should be.
Rattray, 29, doesn’t have an extensive Hockey Canada career. She played in two U-18 World Championship tournaments in 2009 and 2010 before getting her first women’s national team experience at the 2015 World Championship. She missed the 2018 Olympic team and didn’t record her first national team goal until the 2019 worlds.
But it’s not been due to a lack of talent. The 2014 Patty Kazmaier winner and 2018 CWHL MVP has won at every level and is 10th all-time in CWHL scoring with 127 points in 120 games. Throw in a strong Capital City Challenge performance in Ottawa in late 2021 and it’s clear she’s got the talent to play with the best of the best — and be the most noticeable player at times, too.
Rattray has seven medals with Team Canada, including gold at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games last month.
Rattray had nine points for Canada in Beijing, but she did it with just 11:22 of ice time per game. Only Emma Maltais (9:56), Jill Saulnier (9:07) and Laura Stacey (10:13) had less ice time per game as forwards for the tournament champions. Those three combined for 10 points, which is no small feat, either.
Scoring was far from an issue for Canada, but what Rattray proved — and has done so before at the World Championship level – is that she can produce big results in limited action. Coach Troy Ryan could probably use her in a more consistent role higher in the lineup, but he doesn’t need to. Canada’s bottom-six is better than just about anyone else’s top six, so with the talent Canada has, Rattray has been the spark the team needs deeper on the roster sheet.
Rattray’s versatility has made her a constant on Canada’s roster in recent years, and that’s not going to change anytime soon.
“She’s got that bulldog mentality, just works hard and battles for everything she gets,” a scout said. “One of the hardest-working players in the game today. And she only continues to get better.
“If Rattray is a fourth-line forward, find me a better fourth-line forward in women’s hockey. You can’t,” the scout continued.
The women’s World Championship begins next month, and it wouldn’t be too surprising to see some team’s top players elect to stay home after the busy schedule over the past seven months. Having a World Championship just days before the start of Canadian Olympic centralization, only to spend months preparing for the biggest stage in the world during an unusual time could take a toll on someone, even if the experience resulted in double gold.
By the same token, Hockey Canada has a ton of momentum on its side right now, and the core group might not wanna slow things down just yet. It’s a World Championship, after all, and the United States will want revenge. But there’s an opportunity for Rattray to play an even bigger role.
Whenever Canada has needed someone to come up big in the bottom six, Rattray’s been there. And she’ll continue to be a scoring threat for the near future. And, in reality, Canada’s third and fourth lines are all-star lines compared to most World Championship and Olympic lineups, so it’s not a knock on her play, at all. She’s efficient in her scoring ways, and her teammates don’t take that for granted.