The Chicago Blackhawks continue to be embroiled in one of the uglier situations in recent sports memory after a former member of the 2010 Stanley Cup winning squad accused former video coach Brad Aldrich of sexual abuse, coupled with additional reports from more former players that the entire team was aware of the abuse that was happening.
The scandal began when reports surfaced earlier this year that in May of 2010, which would have been during the Stanley Cup Playoffs, team video coach Brad Aldrich “turned on porn and began to masturbate in front of” the unidentified player. Additionally, the report says that Aldrich sent “inappropriate text messages” to the player and threatened to “physically, financially and emotionally” harm the player if he “did not engage in sexual activity” with the coach. The lawsuit stated that the player reported the incident to James F. Gary, the team’s mental skills coach, following the incident.
The lawsuit filed by the player goes on to allege that not only did the Blackhawks fail to do anything to stop the abuse that was reported by a former player last month, but that they ignored it, and even provided Aldrich with a positive reference letter.
Stan Bowman has been feeling the heat, though the Hawks have launched an independent investigation into the matter with the results to be made public at its conclusion. Bowman, who is slated to be General Manager of Team USA at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, is facing calls for his resignation from the position by an advocacy group called Army of Survivors. The group was formed in the wake of the Larry Nasser sexual abuse scandal that rocked the sports world. The group has asked that Bowman go on administrative leave from Team USA until he’s cleared of his alleged role in covering up the abuse at the hands of Aldrich.
On Friday, TSN’s Rick Westhead, who put this whole story out there and gathered facts and statements, reported that a lawyer for a former Chicago Blackhawks player, Susan Loggans, has asked the U.S. Center for SafeSport to investigate Bowman for allegedly covering up the sexual abuse of two former Blackhawks players.
“As you know,” Loggans wrote in her email, “I represent two sexual assault victims who were attacked by [former Blackhawks video coach] Brad Aldrich. I am officially requesting an investigation into a coverup of these sexual assaults by Stan Bowman, an NHL team official who also holds a position of major influence with USA Hockey.”
“Have you considered whether Mr. Bowman should be placed on administrative leave from USA Hockey unless and until he’s cleared by a truly independent investigation as opposed to not one commissioned and paid for by the Blackhawks?” Loggans wrote as well.
Bowman has been the Blackhawks’ general manager since 2009. It remains to be seen what happens for his role with the American team at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, but also… what the heck NHL? What about his role with the Hawks?