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Washington Capitals Instructs NPR Not to Ask Alex Ovechkin About Gay Rights in Russia


Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin, who played for Team Russia at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and is likely to play in Sochi, spoke with NPR about the upcoming Winter Games.

NPR said that Capitals PR asked them not to ask any questions about the anti-gay laws in Russia.

NPR did not follow orders, and asked Ovechkin if athletes and fans have a reason to be worried about discrimination or being arrested at the Games.

Replied Ovechkin: "Nah, I don’t think so. To be honest with you, man, it’s just a situation when people have rights and I’m just hockey player. I just support everybody and everybody have own mind."

Ovechkin was asked a similar question in late August, when he replied: "[There are] calls to boycott the games? Our job is to play. I'd rather speak about that."

Russian Hockey Star Ilya Kovalchuk: 'I Agree' with the Anti-Gay Law


This morning I posted a couple of reactions from Team Canada's Sidney Crosby and Shea Webber to questions at about Russia's anti-gay law at a weekend press conference.

Crosby and Webber both disagree with the law, but at least one former NHLer, now a player in Saint Petersburg, Russia, is toeing his country's line, reports.

Said Kovalchuk when asked about the draconian Russian law:

“I agree, of course,” said Ilya Kovalchuk. “I’m Russian and we all have to respect that. It’s personal and, like I said, it’s a free world, but that’s our line. That’s our country, so everybody has to respect that.”

Meanwhile, more of Team Canada has weighed in:

“It’s hard to go into a country that supports something like that,” said Capitals goalie Braden Holtby. That said, he’s not in favor of boycotting the Games. “I don’t think that would do any good. I think it would cause more problems than it would solve. But I think it’s an opportunity for athletes to get together and support a cause that I think a lot of us really have a passion for. And I think we can do lot of good for it.”

Said Sharks veteran Dan Boyle, “I don’t agree with [the laws]. I just don’t agree. I think, gay or not, that shouldn’t change anything. Not a big fan of that.”

“I was part of that ‘You Can Play’ campaign, and I know a lot of guys who are going to be on Olympic rosters,” said Lightning sniper Steven Stamkos. “It’s a little uneasy with what’s going on over there, but there’s a lot of time and I think things can change.”

NHL Star Sidney Crosby: 'I Don't Agree' with Russia's Anti-Gay Laws - VIDEO


The NHL's top player Sidney Crosby was asked about his views on Russia's anti-gay laws at a press conference for Team Canada on Sunday.

"It's not something we've discussed a whole lot though, but, for me growing up in Canada, my view has always been that way. I think that everyone has an equal right to play and I think we've been supportive of that. With the Olympics and the controversy around that I think those decisions or those laws aren't necessarily something that we might agree with, I don't agree with personally ... their laws and their views, everyone's entitled to those."

Crosby's Team Canada teammate, Nashville Predators star Shea Weber (also a supporter of the You Can Play foundation) said he too disagrees, but echoed Crosby's intent to play in Russia and focus on the game:

"Obviously, the NHLPA and myself are trying to support that cause. Like Sidney said, the way we're brought up is different than how the Russians view it. We're going over there to play hockey and obviously that's what we're going to try and focus on this year throughout our season."


High-profile Olympic athletes had better start getting their answers prepared because they are all going to be asked about this before the Games begin.


Continue reading "NHL Star Sidney Crosby: 'I Don't Agree' with Russia's Anti-Gay Laws - VIDEO" »

NHL Star Tyler Seguin Under Fire for Homophobic Tweet He Blames on 'Hackers'


Tyler Seguin, a former Boston Bruins player who was acquired last week by the Dallas Stars, is under fire for a tweet he sent out on Saturday night that he blamed on hackers.

Tweet_seguinSeguin's tweet, since deleted, read: "Only steers and queers in Texas, and I'm not a cow."

The Dallas Stars reacted immediately, distancing themselves from Seguin's tweet:

“In no way, shape or form does the Dallas Stars organization condone or agree with the message that was sent out through Tyler Seguin’s Twitter feed last night. We’ve addressed the issue directly with Tyler and we’ll continue to work on educating our players regarding the importance of their conduct on all forms of social media.”

Seguin later announced he's taking a break from Twitter, but blamed the statement on "hackers":

After repeated attempts by "hackers" to try to damage my reputation I have decided to shut down my twitter account for a while.— Tyler Seguin (@tylerseguin92) July 07, 2013 says it isn't the first time Seguin has made a similar mistake: "Earlier this year, he added 'no homo' to a description of his reaction after listening to a song written by his roommate. He later apologized for using that phrase."

The Star-Mangled Banner: VIDEO


Canadian jazz singer Alexis Normand had a bit of a flop-sweat moment over the weekend when she failed to recall the words to America's national anthem at the Memorial Cup (Canada's National Junior Hockey Tournament). Hope your weekend was better than hers.


(via deadspin)

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Jon Snow Went to a Hockey Game


For you Game of Thrones fans. Kit Harington attended a Toronto Maple Leafs game last week, and the captioners had quite a good time with it.


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