Capitals invite hockey team that defended teammate from racial taunts to game

Yahoo Sports
One youth hockey team stood firm in the face of racism. (AP Photo)
One youth hockey team stood firm in the face of racism. (AP Photo)

The Washington Capitals want to reward a youth hockey team that stood up to racism. The Maryland-based Metro Maple Leafs found themselves in the news after one of their players heard racist taunts during a game. The team banded together to defend that teammate, and that drew the attention of the Capitals.

In a video, Capitals players Devante Smith-Pelly and John Carlson invited the entire team to Monday’s game. The moment the Metro Maple Leafs found out was captured on video.

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During a recent tournament, one of the players on the Metro Maple Leafs started hearing racist taunts. Divyne Apollon II, who is black, heard the n-word, among other things, according to the Washington Post.

“So Divyne, 13, the only black player on his Maryland hockey team, wasn’t prepared for the monkey sounds another team’s players made at him. And the n-word. And the constant chants of “Get off the ice! Go play basketball!”

In the third period of that game, Apollon’s teammates had enough. They brawled with the other team to defend Apollon. The 13-year-old Apollon was suspended for the rest of the tournament.

After Apollon explained what happened, the team’s parents decided to take action. One of the team moms, Tammi Lynch, designed logos with the word “Racism” crossed out by a hockey stick.


The team and parents have displayed the sticker during games.

Smith-Pelly and Carlson weren’t the only players to reach out to Apollon. Nashville Predators defenseman P.K. Subban also sent an encouraging message to Apollon.


On top of going to the game, the Metro Maple Leafs will also have a chance to meet Capitals players after the contest.

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