The NHL’s Pride Night has been met with some controversy, as certain players and teams have chosen not to participate in wearing the special jerseys. While some have cited religious reasons for their refusal, others have pointed to safety concerns in their home countries.
In a recent interview with The Athletic’s Thomas Drance, Vancouver Canucks head coach Rick Tocchet confirmed that all players, with the exception of Andrei Kuzmenko, will be wearing the team’s Pride jersey. According to Tocchet, the decision for Kuzmenko to opt-out is a family decision, with concerns over the safety of his family in Russia due to the country’s strict LGBTQ laws.
The situation highlights the ongoing struggle for LGBTQ rights and acceptance, both within the world of sports and beyond. While the NHL and many of its players have made efforts to promote inclusivity and celebrate diversity, instances like this serve as a reminder of the challenges that still remain in achieving true equality.