For several days now fans of the National Hockey League have been inundated with news about just how terrible hockey culture is. There of course has been plenty of push back from those very same fans but what has been interesting is the lack of players or personnel connected to the NHL that have spoken out in defense of our beloved sport. No doubt wanting to simply avoid being a potential target of the outrage mob has played a large factor in that, but it seems not everyone is comfortable just sitting quietly while all of this goes on.
It seems as though former NHL enforcer Kelly Chase has been keeping close tabs on the stories that have been bandied about over the last several days and now Chase is speaking out against some of the narratives that have been spun by both former players and the media. Specifically Chase appeared to take issue with how the Sutter family was being treated during all of this and he took to social media to express how grateful he was at the treatment he had received from those being criticized by others.
"Thought long and hard about this: I’ve always been a person who stuck up for his friends.I’m not sure how anyone else views the Sutter‘s either coaching or as players but I know they’ve done a tremendous amount for a lot of people and are a huge reason why many have had success," said Chase on social media.
It was a brave move on the part of chase in the face of so much potential backlash but given that the man was a former enforcer in arguably the roughest era of the National Hockey League, I imagine it takes a bit more than a few angry messages to scare him off. In fact Chase even admonished some of his other fellow players, players who have up until now chosen to remain silent on this issue, for not being brave enough to speak publicly.
"And I may be missing it and I know everyone is nervous in today’s world about saying anything but I am shocked more of Darryl‘s players haven’t come to his side."
Chase also made it clear that he was not immune to the tough love that was being handed out by coaches in his era of hockey, but as you can tell given his statements over the weekend he was not phased by it.
"Lastly I need a clear Conscience . I was called fat, a cement head , cement hands, and a goon . And guess what I don’t blame any league the NHL or any of the players who said it."
Former NHL forward Daniel Carcillo attempted to shut down Chase's comments on social media by claiming that this wasn't about Chase's personal experiences.
"Appreciate the share Kelly."
"Glad your experiences were positive."
"With all due respect, this isn’t about the apparent “good” the Sutters have done."
"This is about their history of abuse, cover ups and about the victims who are willing to stand up to them."
Chase however was not about to be silenced by Carcillo and made it clear that, while he has been very vocal about player issues he does not speak for every player in the NHL fraternity.
"Listen kid. You have your views and your opinions and you’re putting them out there that’s fine. You’re not convincing me that these are bad people.There’s an overwhelming amount of our colleagues that don’t agree with you and are sitting on their hands and that’s the real shame."