The Chicago Blackhawks have opted not to don their Pride-themed warmup jerseys ahead of their match against the Vancouver Canucks this coming Pride Night Sunday, according to ESPN.
The Blackhawks will forego getting outfitted in the aforementioned due to a Russian law that has expanded restrictions as they pertain to activities promoting LGBTQIA+ rights in the country.
The NHL side has worn Pride warmup jerseys in the past but has made the decision not to on the back of discussions with security officials both in and outside of the organization. While Pride night is still scheduled to go on, the jerseys will not be worn as Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law back in December that puts greater restrictions on LGBTQIA+ events.
Blackhawks defenseman Nikita Zaitsev is a native of Moscow while there are other players who have family in Russia or other links to the state.
The team’s decision comes in the wake of San Jose Sharks goalie James Reimer and Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ivan Provorov refusing to take part in warmups featuring Pride-themed gear.
The New York Rangers also declined to wear the jerseys or use Pride tape on their sticks as part of their Pride Night earlier this year, though they had been advertised.
Nikolai Knyzhov and Alexander Barabanov, both Russians, wore Sharks Pride-themed jerseys on Sunday, however.WANT MORE FROM TOTALPROSPORTS? FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE NEWS.