Throughout the recent NHL season, there have been various discussions surrounding racism in the sport and how many black players have felt like the environment isn’t always inclusive. In fact, some coaches have been ousted from the league due to their past behavior in the locker room. Needless to say, the NHL is trying to reform itself while also making hockey a sport that is inclusive for everyone, regardless of race.
Today, the NHL began its own bubble experiment with one of the games taking place in Edmonton. Prior to the start of the match between the Edmonton Oilers and Chicago Blackhawks, Minnesota Wild defenceman Matt Dumba came out and stood at center ice, where he gave a passionate speech about racial inequality and how we must stand up against systemic racism.-
Dumba was the only one to kneel for the anthem, as two black players in Malcolm Subban of the Blackhawks and Darnell Nurse of the Oilers put their hands on his shoulders. It was an incredible moment and a necessary one for a league that is still trying to figure out how to be a more inclusive space.
Dumba and the Wild will be taking on the Vancouver Canucks in a best-of-5 play-in round.