HDA co-director Evander Kane highlighted the request on Thursday, tweeting a message to the league on behalf of the Alliance, which was sent shortly after by the rest of the HDA.
“We the [HDA] officially called on the NHL to suspend all playoff games today, ”Kane wrote. “We strongly believe this sends a clear message that human rights take precedence over sport.”
The demand follows a historic day in professional sports that saw a number of players boycott games and force postponements in response to persistent incidents of racial injustice in the United States.
Shaken by the shooting of a 29-year-old black man named Jacob Blake by a police officer in Kenosha, Wisc., NBA and WNBA players – led first by the Milwaukee Bucks – have chosen to boycott their playoff games Wednesday until further. action has been taken.
Their protests were followed by similar actions across the world of sport, with three MLB games not played, as well as five of the six MLS games.
The NHL has chosen to move forward with its scheduled games, with the Bruins-Lightning and Avalanche-Stars both starting Wednesday night. The league also hosted a “moment of reflection” ahead of the first of two Wednesday night games.
HDA members Kane and Matt Dumba have both expressed disappointment with the NHL for not having followed much in the rest of the sporting world.
“The NHL, we’re always late to the party, especially on these topics,” Dumba told Sportsnet 650 on Wednesday. “So it’s a little sad and disheartening for me and the other HDA members, and I’m sure other guys in the league.
“But if no one gets up and does anything, it’s the same – it’s just that silence that you’re just outside watching as a leader and summoning a real change when you have such an opportunity to do so.
Kane added that it is crucial that other players in the league understand that the burden cannot be placed solely on the shoulders of players of color.
“It’s not just my responsibility as a minority player in the NHL to talk about these issues. It’s not just Wayne Simmonds, or Akim Aliu or Joel Ward or Matt Dumba, the position or the issues in this company – it’s everyone’s, ”Kane said.
“And until everyone decides to take it on their own, maybe walk away from some of their privileges, get educated and really fight with us, we’ll be in the same situation.” than today.
Two NHL games are currently scheduled for Thursday: Game 3 for the Islanders-Flyers and Game 3 for the Canucks-Golden Knights.