Insider reveals the actual reason that teams are scrapping Pride Jersey nights

Published March 12, 2023 at 11:01

The NHL has received a lot of backlash from fans upset that teams have made the decision to scrap wearing their Pride inspired jerseys. It began when Philadelphia Flyers defender Ivan Provorov opted out of pregame skate to avoid wearing the jersey. Now it has spiraled to more teams choosing to scrap the initiative.

However, it now appears that teams have actually been making this decision for a particular reason. According to Michael Russo and Joe Smith of The Athletic the reason is much deeper than most fans realize.

They cite that multiple teams with high-profile Russian players are scrapping their pride-themed night jerseys after Russia updated their anti-gay laws in December.

"It is illegal to spread 'propaganda' about 'nontraditional sexual relations' in all media, including social, advertising and movies."

Ben Noble, associate professor of Russian politics at University College London, says that Russian players are "absolutely" at risk should they wear the pride-themed warmup jerseys.

"These are legitimate fears," Noble said. "If you put on a Pride jersey, then there is uncertainty regarding how this would be interpreted by law enforcement in Russia and that's a risk. The authorities have the power to enforce this and other legislation selectively. It's up to them to decide whom they go after."

This provides far greater insight into the matter of Pride Jersey nights. It will be interesting to see if fans take this information and take it as an explanation or if teams will continue to receive negative feedback from fans.

Either way, it appears the NHL and teams are taking appropriate steps to protect their players.
March 12   |   249 answers
Insider reveals the actual reason that teams are scrapping Pride Jersey nights

Should the NHL get rid of Pride Night forever?

No, there is a time and place for it3514.1 %
Yes, scrap Pride night for good7530.1 %
Take all politics out of hockey13955.8 %
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