Brampton boasts an embarrassment of riches in homegrown talent: nearly every professional sport now has players leaving a Brampton-shaped mark on their league. All eyes are on the Leafs and Canadiens rivalry in the quest for the Stanley Cup, but a Bramptonian recently gave local hockey fans reason to celebrate women’s sports excellence on the ice. Enter Mikyla Grant-Mentis.
The Brampton-based player boasts stats that turn heads after “rewriting the record book” for her former team, the Merrimack Warriors. Grant-Mentis led scoring with 20 goals, and 13 assists for a total of 33 points in 33 games. She also set another record by scoring 56 goals with 61 assists in 137 games. Signing with the Toronto Six in May 2020, she similarly left her mark on the ice, leading to a near sweep at the NWHL Awards, winning Newcomer of the Year, the Foundation Award, the fans’ Three Stars Award, and the NWHL MVP title. Beyond the 2021 Awards, she was also the leading scorer for the 2020-2021 season.
If these accomplishments aren’t enough to make a trophy case groan under the weight of her talent, she also made NWHL history by being the first player to win four awards in one season, the first Black player to bring home such high honors, and the first Black player to be named league MVP.
What makes her story even more incredible was her life off the ice during the pandemic. After the shortened season ended, Grant-Mentis returned to her job as an essential, frontline worker at FedEx in Mississauga. In an interview with the Six Fix Podcast she noted that she gets up at 3am every morning to get to work (saying nothing about fitting training into her schedule). Beyond unparalleled talent on the ice, and being a frontline worker, Grant-Mentis also gave back to the community by supporting seniors in Brampton through a non-profit food bank, and bringing toys to families in need with her aunt through the Kidnetix Kids Association.
If there is a definition of homegrown greatness and leadership, it’s hard to imagine its gaze being focused anywhere but the likes of talent like Grant-Mentis.
It’s safe to say that if her debut season is any indication, Brampton hockey fans have a LOT to look forward to from Mikyla Grant-Mentis. All eyes will be on World Championship IIHF selection, as she also is a Team Canada hopeful. Brampton hockey fans eagerly await more news but for now there is much to celebrate in sports excellence on and off the ice.