Gary Bettman Makes A Big Statement About The Future Of Pride Night

Published March 28, 2023 at 10:38

This season, several NHL players have chosen to remain silent in protest against the league's LGBTQ+ Pride Night celebrations. Players such as Ivan Provorov, James Reimer, Marc Staal, Eric Staal, and Ilya Lyubushkin have declined to wear the Pride Night-themed warmup jerseys intended to promote inclusivity and celebrate the LGBTQ+ community.

Although players are entitled to support or oppose the issue individually, these protests are affecting the league's message of inclusiveness. When players opt-out, the focus shifts from inclusivity and support for sexual orientation and gender identity to discrimination and intolerance, particularly towards the transgender community. Consequently, the NHL is now reportedly considering discontinuing these celebrations.

"This is the first time we've experienced that, and I think it's something that we're going to have to evaluate in the offseason," NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman told CTV News on Monday in Ottawa.

"This is one issue where players for a variety of reasons may not feel comfortable wearing the uniform as a form of endorsement," he said.

"But I think that's become more of a distraction now because the substance of what our teams and we have been doing and stand for is really being pushed to the side for what is a handful of players basically have made personal decisions, and you have to respect that as well."

These protests have created a significant distraction from the broader message that the NHL is attempting to support, leading to questions about whether the Pride Night events are worthwhile. If Pride Night merely offers a platform for players and fans to express negative opinions and engage in bad faith arguments, should it continue?

As seen on Hockey Feed - Report: NHL looking at cancelling Pride Night celebrations
March 28   |   814 answers
Gary Bettman Makes A Big Statement About The Future Of Pride Night

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