Maple Leafs won't wear themed jerseys for team's Pride night Tuesday
An Ottawa Senators player warms-up with rainbow-coloured hockey tape prior to taking on the Vancouver Canucks in NHL hockey action in Ottawa on Wednesday, April 28, 2021.The Toronto Maple Leafs won’t wear themed warmup jerseys for the team’s annual Pride night celebration Tuesday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
The Canadian Press
Published Tuesday, April 4, 2023 12:06PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, April 4, 2023 3:57PM EDT
TORONTO - The Toronto Maple Leafs won't wear themed warmup jerseys for the team's annual Pride night celebration Tuesday.
The organization has held Pride nights in support of the LGBTQ community since 2017, but has never sported special warmup jerseys.
The Leafs say rainbow stick tape will be available to players during the pre-game skate, and the team has a number of other events planned throughout the night.
Toronto players and head coach Sheldon Keefe donned rainbow-themed T-shirts during a Tuesday morning media availability before facing the Columbus Blue Jackets.
A small group of NHLers have declined to wear Pride warmup jerseys this season, including Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Ivan Provorov, San Jose Sharks goalie James Reimer, Eric and Marc Staal of the Florida Panthers, and Buffalo Sabres blue-liner Ilya Lyubushkin.
Leafs defenceman Morgan Rielly has marched in Toronto's Pride parade along with general manager Kyle Dubas and team president Brendan Shanahan in the past.
“I believe actions speak louder than words,” Rielly said Tuesday. “And especially speak louder than attire.”
The Leafs will have Pride decals on their helmets, but Russian goaltender Ilya Samsonov isn't expected to wear one on the back of his mask.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 4, 2023.