Vegas Golden Knights’ Max Pacioretty (67) and Vancouver Canucks’ Tanner Pearson (70) battle for the puck during second period NHL Western Conference Stanley Cup playoff action in Edmonton on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

NHL to postpone Thursday, Friday games amid protests over racial injustice

Reports say move was led by the Vancouver Canucks

The National Hockey League has suspended all playoff games scheduled for Thursday (Aug. 27) and Friday (Aug. 28).

In a joint statement released Thursday afternoon, the league and the players association said they “recognize that much work remains to be done before we can play an appropriate role in a discussion centered on diversity, inclusion and social justice.”

The move follows the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin on Sunday, an incident that kicked off a new surge of Black Lives Matter protests across the U.S. The demonstrations come during a year that has seen ongoing protests since the end of May, after a video went viral of a Minneapolis police officer kneeling for several minutes on the neck of George Floyd, a Black man, who later died. The officer was subsequently charged with murder.

According to reports, the move by the NHL to cancel the games was led by the Vancouver Canucks. Multiple other professional sports leagues postponed games Wednesday (Aug. 26), including the NBA, WNBA, and MLS. Some MLB players also chose not to play.

Vancouver was scheduled to play the Las Vegas Golden Knights, in Game 3 of their best of seven series, on Thursday evening. The statement noted that all four games initially scheduled to be played on Thursday and Friday would be rescheduled to start Saturday (Aug. 29) and the remainder of the second round of playoffs would be adjusted accordingly.

The pause in play comes after the Hockey Diversity Alliance called on the NHL to suspend play tonight “to allow players and fans to reflect on what happened and to send a message that human rights must take priority over sport.”

Calls for the league to suspend play have come from both inside and outside the NHL. Minnesota Wild defenceman Matt Dumba, who was the first NHL player to take a knee before the start of a game earlier this summer, and San Jose Sharks winger Evander Kane, one of relatively few Black players in the league, have asked for play to be stopped.

In a tweet posted prior to the cancellation, Kane said it was “incredibly insulting” that the NHL did not follow the lead of other professional sports leagues. In lieu of suspending play, the NHL held a “moment of reflection” before one of its Wednesday games.

More to come.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

NHL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. salmon farms challenge activists’ demands for site closures

News reporting also unfair, inaccurate and distorted

Ladysmith man arrested in Saanich after towed sawmill draws attention

Police located the man thanks to social media and a keen-eyed witness

Killer whales cause a scene

WHALE OF A TALE Art Carlyle captured these images of killer whales… Continue reading

Ladysmith man shocked out of his seat after $50,000 Keno win

Larry Salmond plans to purchase a new RV with his winnings

Green Party pins Nanaimo-North Cowichan riding hopes on Istace

Leader Furstenau in town for the announcement of Chemainus businessman’s candidacy

105 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death as health officials urge B.C. to remember safety protocols

There are currently 1268 active cases, with 3,337 people under public health monitoring

U.S. Presidential Debate Takeaways: An acrid tone from the opening minute

Here are key takeaways from the first of three scheduled presidential debates before Election Day on Nov. 3

B.C. nurses report rise in depression, anxiety, exhaustion due to pandemic

A new UBC study looks into how the COVID-19 response has impacted frontline nurses

National child-care plan could help Canada rebound from COVID-induced economic crisis: prof

A $2 billion investment this year could help parents during second wave of pandemic

Search suspended for Indigenous elder last seen mushroom picking in northwest B.C.

Mushroom picker Thomas (Tommy) Dennis has been missing since Sept. 16

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

16 MLAs retiring from B.C. politics add up to $20M in pensions: Taxpayers Federation

Taxpayers pay $4 for every dollar MLAs contribute to their pensions

‘Bonnie’ and ‘Henry’ among latest litter of service dog puppies

B.C. Alberta Guide Dogs names two pups after provincial health officer

B.C. VOTES 2020: Few solutions offered for ‘out of control’ camping

B.C. Liberals, NDP spend millions as problem keeps growing

Most Read