The Minnesota Wild’s Matt Dumba turned the primary NHL player to take a knee during the national anthem on Saturday afternoon.
Prior the beginning of the Chicago Blackhawks and Edmonton Oilers Stanley Cup qualifying sequence, the NHL’s pregame ceremony featured gamers from each groups standing in a circle on middle ice. After a brief voice over honoring entrance line well being care staff and social justice advocates, Dumba entered the rink in a Hockey Diversity Alliance sweatshirt.
Standing in a circle of his friends, Dumba, who’s Filipino-Canadian, spoke on behalf of the HDA about racial justice and the way he hopes hockey and its followers can rise to meet the second.
“Black Lives Matter. Breonna Taylor’s life matters,” Dumba said. “Hockey is a great game, but it can be a whole lot greater…and it starts with all of us.”
As the opening strains of the American national anthem performed, Dumba took a knee.
Supported by the Blackhawks’ Malcom Subban and the Oilers’ Darnell Nurse, Dumba made NHL historical past in a strong, transferring second.
Taking a knee is likely to be checked out as a performative gesture somewhere else, such because the NBA or WNBA area, the place it’s much more widespread, however in an NHL rink it’s nonetheless a daring, controversial assertion of protest.
Dumba, a founding member of the Hockey Diversity Alliance, has spoken out lately concerning the want for the NHL and NHL gamers to do extra to assist obtain racial justice. As the Canadian national anthem began, Dumba, who performs in Minnesota, stood up.
Dumba taking a knee shouldn’t be minimized, but it didn’t go unnoticed that no different gamers, particularly white gamers, have been keen to kneel with him. Despite the present of unity, Dumba reduce a lonely work out on middle ice.