NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – One 7-year-old girl has stood up for her truth and brought about change in the National Hockey League by playing her cards right.
Sabrina Scali started playing hockey when she was 5 and a half, reports CBS2’s Steve Overmyer. That’s two whole years ago.
“I love playing hockey, it’s my favorite sport,” said 7-year-old Sabrina Scali. “My favorite part about hockey is skating really fast. I like going really fast.”
Recently she noticed the NHL sells playing cards, and each deck has a problem.
What was it on the playing cards that she didn’t like?
“The queens were cheerleaders, and cheerleaders aren’t in hockey and girls can play hockey too,” Sabrina said.
This little social justice warrior picked up a pencil and paper and wrote a note to the NHL.
“When she wrote the letter, we thought ‘This is great, this will teach her really an honest lesson about standing up for something,'” said her father, Mike Scali. “The response we got from the NHL was beyond our wildest imaginations.”
The league sent them a bag of goodies, but that’s not all.
“They wrote me back and said that they are changing the playing cards,” Sabrina said.
That’s right – the league’s playing cards will now have the queens holding a hockey stick.
“I’m happy they’re changing the cards,” she said. “They also said that I would get the first pack of the new playing cards. They’re still changing it. I don’t know when it’s coming out though.”
The New York Rangers heard about her efforts and organized a Junior Ranger Girls Hockey clinic for her and her teammates to skate on the Garden ice.
“If people see something that’s wrong in the world, they should stand up and fight for what they believe in,” said dad Mike. “I think it sends a tremendous message.”
Sabrina even inspired an Olympian. Amanda Kessell won a gold medal for Team USA and is part of the Rangers’ youth initiative.
“For a young girl (to) really take a stand and to do that, and kind of keep pushing the envelope forward for all girls, it’s really impressive,” said Kessel of Junior Rangers Girls Hockey.
What’s the message that he the young agent of change hope they receive?
“Girls can play anything they want,” said Sabrina.
As for her own ambitions at age 7, she dreams of being a DJ, but not even the sky is the limit for Sabrina.
“I wanna go into outer space,” she said. “I really do like outer space.”
The Rangers started their girls’ hockey program just a few months ago and so far more than 2,000 girls have taken part.