With all of the negative press and allegations that have been thrown around the hockey world as of late, you almost forget that it was only a week ago that the Toronto Maple Leafs fired Mike Babcock and replaced him with Sheldon Keefe.
In the days after, the infamous Babcock-Mitch Marner “list” story came to light. Then, before the dust even had the chance to settle, allegations of the use of racial slurs and physical assault levied against Calgary Flames head coach Bill Peters were voiced by former NHLers Akim Aliu and Michal Jordan, respectively.
While both the Babcock and Peters sagas unfolded at nearly the same time, San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane is trying to make sure the two aren’t lumped together in the eyes of the public.
“They’re very different situations,” Kane said, according to Curtis Pashelka of the Bay Area News Group.
“The Babcock situation, I guess he was using it [the Marner list] as some sort of tactic or motivational tool. Obviously, I don’t think there are that many people who would agree with it, but that’s more of [a] coaching situation if you will.
“With the Peters situation, it was racial slurs that were uttered in a real derogatory way, allegedly. Two very different situations. I don’t agree with a part of the hockey world trying to conjoin the two because they’re so different and the severity of them is so lopsided.”
Both Marner and Babcock have since commented on the incident that occurred in January of 2017, with Babcock saying that he apologized to Marner after it happened and Marner encouraging individuals to speak out about mistreatment by coaches.
As of Wednesday night, Peters has left the Flames organization.
“The world’s changing,” said Sharks head coach Pete DeBoer, per Pashelka. “I’ve got three kids and they grew up in a totally different world than I grew up in. We all have to change with that. At the same time, there’s no excuse for racism or physical abuse anywhere in the world. Now, and there wasn’t 10 years ago, either. I don’t think that’s changed.”
“I think there’s an evolution on all fronts in hockey,” he added. “Players have had an evolution, so have coaches, so have management.”
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