Chicago Blackhawk Connor Bedard Using Stick With Pride Tape
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Fans Flame Connor Bedard For Pride Night Actions

Published March 27, 2024 at 9:27 PM

NHL fans are flaming Chicago Blackhawks rookie Connor Bedard for his on-ice actions during the Pride Night game Tuesday night against Calgary.

Pride Nights have been part of the NHL since 2018, with all teams showing their support for the LGBTQ+ community in some way. Teams used to have special jerseys for these themed nights, and some players would use rainbow-colored tape on their sticks during warmup.

However, after facing repeated pushback, the NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and the Board of Directors were forced to make the difficult decision to discontinue all use of Pride or any other themed jerseys. Provided the unfortunate fact that many players and fans do not support the community, his argument that these jerseys would ultimately be a distraction from the game and the cause is not hard to understand.

"Those are legitimate concerns, but in the final analysis, all of the efforts and emphasis on these important various causes have been undermined by the distraction in terms of which teams and which players (are wearing them). This way, we can keep it focused on the game. On these specialty nights, we're going to be focused on the cause."

Despite the lack of Pride Jerseys, some fans are attacking Connor Bedard for his
recent use of Pride Tape.

In addition to the jerseys, all themed symbols were banned from the ice. This was quickly reversed after Arizona Coyotes defenseman Travis McDermott defied this rule by donning pride tape in a game against the Anaheim Ducks last October.

While Connor Bedard has continued to demonstrate his strong character, he was not left out of the line of fire, however, as several fans made hateful and explicit comments after showing his support for the LGBTQ+ community by using this rainbow-colored tape during their Pride Night game against the Calgary Flames on Tuesday.

Though it is unfortunate to see so many negative responses to something well-intentioned, many fans see this display of solidarity in a more positive light. It may be enough to make other players feel more comfortable to show support for a cause of their own.

Source - Hawks Insider:
Connor Bedard faces backlash following stance on Pride movement
March 27   |   214 answers
Fans Flame Connor Bedard For Pride Night Actions

Should more players join Bedard in using Pride Tape?

Yes11352.8 %
No10147.2 %
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