The latest development in the Hockey Canada controversy saw Michael Brind’Amour step down Friday night as chair of its board of directors, effective immediately.
“My final term ends in November 2022, and I know that there is no need to wait for a new era. Immediate action is essential to address the important challenges facing our organization and our sport,” Brind’Amour stated through a Hockey Canada news release.
Hockey Canada board of directors and members will meet in the coming days to determine next steps and to appoint an interim chair.
In June, the organization’s access to public funds was frozen by the federal government over its response to an alleged sexual assault and subsequent out-of-court settlement.
A woman filed a $3.5-million lawsuit in April that said in 2018, eight hockey players including members of Canada’s world junior team sexually assaulted her. Hockey Canada reached a settlement with a young woman the next month.
The complainant says she has always fully co-operated with a police investigation into her case, despite Hockey Canada originally saying she didn’t.
COMING UP LIVE | Sports Minister to discuss recent meeting with provincial sports ministers:
Recently, retail giant Canadian Tire and telecommunications company Telus, among others, paused their Hockey Canada sponsorships.
And last month, Hockey Canada executives testified before a House of Commons committee Wednesday said they’ve paid $8.9 million for sexual abuse settlements to 21 complainants since 1989 from the “National Equity Fund,” which they said is generated by membership fees and investments.
WATCH | Hockey Canada has paid 21 sexual misconduct settlements since 1989
“I have listened carefully and intently to the comments of Canadians about the culture of our sport and our organization, and about our actions and leadership,” Brind’Amour said in a statement. “I understand that the actions we have taken in recent weeks are part of the solution.”
The announcement follows Hockey Canada’s appointment of former Canadian Supreme Court judge, Thomas Cromwell, to review the governance of the country’s governing body of hockey.
The review is expected to provide interim recommendations before Hockey Canada’s annual general meeting in November.
“I am reassured that The Honourable Thomas Cromwell, C.C., has agreed to lead a governance review of our organization that will help us make the changes that are needed. I am confident the recommendations will guide the organization into a future of desired change.”
On Friday, Canada’s 13 regional hockey federations announced they are threatening to withhold dues payments from Hockey Canada considering the organization’s alleged mishandling of sexual assault allegations in 2018.
Led by Hockey Quebec, the organizations sent a letter Thursday asking for a detailed action plan and an “extraordinary” meeting by the end of November to address their concerns.
The statement of claim, which has not been proven in court, said the hockey players brought golf clubs to the hotel room to further intimidate her, directed the woman to shower after the sexual assault and told her to say she was sober while they videotaped a consent video.
WATCH: Hockey Canada will bar players who don’t co-operate with investigation:
As first reported by the Globe and Mail earlier this week, the complainant’s lawyer Robert Talach released a statement saying that his client was clear to police in June 2018 that she wanted criminal charges pursued.
Talach provided a series of new details about the case including that his client spoke with a detective within days of the alleged sexual assault and had a physical exam done at a hospital.
His client also later gave her clothing to police to examine and met with officers on two other occasions that summer, Talach said. After seven months, she was told the investigation was closed and no charges would be laid.
Following an eruption of public outrage, London’s police chief announced recently it would conduct an internal review to “determine what, if any, additional investigative avenues exist.”
Talach said his law firm set up a polygraph test for the woman and that she passed. The results have since been provided to police and Hockey Canada’s investigators and the NHL, which in May launched its own investigation.
Talach confirmed his client will not be sitting down for an interview with Hockey Canada or the NHL’s investigators because she’s already provided an eight-page statement, five pages of photos and 4.5 pages of text messages.
Three Stars from Day 6 of WJC: Bergmanis steals the show in Latvia’s historical win – Sportsnet.ca
In a slate of games featuring the likes of Sweden, Finland and the United States, the showstopper of Day 6 at the World Juniors was Latvia.
The tiny country notched its first ever win in WJC preliminary round play and by the same token hopped over Czechia and Slovakia into third place in Group A.
Latvian captain Ralf Bergmanis scored a hat trick and his team downed Czechia 5-3. They will play a World Juniors quarterfinal game for the first time in the country’s history.
Needless to say, the young men in burgundy were quite thrilled.
Finland had no pity for Slovakia and continued their solid run in the tournament with a 9-3 win. The Young Lions were 5-for-7 on the power play, sending their next opponents Canada a message to stay disciplined for their final preliminary round game on Monday.
Slovakia saw their chances to play a quarterfinal game crumble before their eyes in the next game. Sitting in the stands, Slovak players held their heads in their hands as Bergmanis scored his third goal from across the ice into an empty net.
The Americans outpaced Sweden for most of their battle for first place in Group B. Goaltending woes allowed the Junior Crowns to hope for a comeback but the red, white and blue weathered the late storm to clinch a 3-2 win.
The Swedes will play Germany on Monday and the winner will end the preliminary round in second place.
Here is a look at the top performances from Day 6 of the World Juniors:
3rd star: Matt Coronato, USA
Coronato’s scoring ability is more than evident. If you give an inch, he’ll take a mile.
The five-foot-10 winger added two goals to his World Juniors tally and helped the Americans finish atop Group B. Coronato is now tied with his country-mate Carter Mazur as the tournament’s second-leading goalscorer with four.
The Calgary Flames’ 13th overall selection in the 2021 NHL Draft showed his eye for goal with his second marker of the night. Off a Swedish turnover, Coronato bagged the eventual game-winner with a sniper’s goal.
Coronato notched his first goal of the game in the second period when he pounced on a rebound from a shot by Logan Cooley. The soon-to-be Harvard sophomore made Sweden goalie Jesper Wallsted look bad by lodging the puck under his blocker and into the net.
2nd star: Kasper Simontaival, Finland
There’s no shame in being opportunistic, especially if it earns you points in return. Simontaival did exactly that to bridge the gap between the Finns and Slovaks. The winger finished the game with three points (two goals, one assist) including one assist on the power play.
The LA Kings third-rounder in 2020 stood by the slot and pounced on a rebound to give Finland a power-play goal 34 seconds into the second period. The goal was later given to Roni Hirvonen, who had touched the puck last.
Both players also combined in the first period, this time Hirvonen found Simontaival in the slot for the goal.
Simontaival notched his second goal of the game in the third period when he was, once again, in front of the net. He redirected Aatu Raty’s pass in the back of the net and gave Finland an 8-3 lead.
The 20-year-old even screened goalie Tomas Bolo for Finland’s ninth goal of the game courtesy of Kasper Puutio. Bottom line, sticking around dangerous areas is paying off for the five-foot-nine winger.
1st star: Ralfs Bergmanis, Latvia
Captain Latvia came through for the motherland. Charles and Nikolaj Boyle from Brooklyn’s 99th precinct would be proud.
Bergmanis opened his tournament account and finished the game as the hat trick hero, lifting his country into the knockout round.
Bergmanis completed his hat trick in an empty net, from behind his own net. A rink-long shot sealed his team’s victory, as the disillusioned Slovak players watched their elimination from the stands.
[brightcove videoID=6310886309112 playerID=JCdte3tMv height=360 width=640]
Latvia took a first-period lead and right as Czechia attempted the comeback with an equalizing goal in the second, the University of Vermont commit got to work. Bergmanis regained Latvia’s lead when his shot from the point in traffic found the back of the net.
Bergmanis then gave his country a two-goal lead on the power play. From the point, the blueliner broke Frantisek Nemec’s ankles before beating Czech netminder Jan Bednar with a wrister.
The 20-year-old is still undrafted but he sure made a lot of eyes look his way in one of the biggest games in Latvian junior hockey history.
Blue Jays activate Springer from IL, designate Zimmer for assignment – Sportsnet.ca
The Toronto Blue Jays have activated outfielder George Springer from the 10-day injured list ahead of Monday’s series opener against the Baltimore Orioles.
Outfielder Bradley Zimmer was designated for assignment in a corresponding move.
Springer has been on the IL with right elbow inflammation since Aug. 5. Interim manager John Schneider has previously said Springer is expected to slot in as the designated hitter once activated to allow the injury to continue to heal.
When healthy, Springer has made a major impact from the lead-off spot for the Blue Jays. In 89 games he has hit .251/.331/.464 with 18 home runs and 49 RBI, good enough to earn a selection to this year’s all-star game.
Zimmer was never able to make an impact beyond as a defensive replacement this season and his role was further limited by the addition of free-agent Jackie Bradley Jr. last week. The 29-year-old Zimmer was brought in to provide some depth as a left-handed bat and appeared in 77 games, hitting .105/.209/.237.
The Blue Jays outfield, now healthy, consists of Springer, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Teoscar Hernandez and Bradley, Jr., with Whit Merrifield and Cavan Biggio available as platoon options.
Yusei Kikuchi will be on the mound when the Blue Jays host the Orioles in the first of three games Monday night. You can watch the game on Sportsnet and SN NOW beginning at 7:07 p.m. ET.
Hockey Canada announces Women's Worlds roster – TSN
Hockey Canada has announced the 23 players named to Canada’s National Women’s Team who will look to defend the gold medal at the 2022 IIHF Women’s World Championship, beginning August 24 in Denmark.
The players were chosen following an 11-day selection camp at the Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park in Calgary as part of the BFL National Women’s Program Summer Showcase. The camp featured on- and off-ice testing, skills sessions and six intrasquad games showcasing players competing for roster spots with Canada’s National Women’s Team and Canada’s National Women’s Development Team.
Ann-Renée Desbiens, Clermont, Que.; Emerance Maschmeyer, Bruderheim, Alta.; Kristen Campbell, Brandon. Man.
Jocelyne Larocque, Ste. Anne, Man.; Meaghan Mikkelson, St. Albert, Alta.; Renata Fast, Burlington, Ont.; Ella Shelton, Ingersoll, Ont.; Ashton Bell, Deloraine, Man.; Erin Ambrose, Keswick, Ont.; Micah Zandee-Hart, Saanichton, B.C.
Laura Stacey, Kleinburg, Ont.; Jessie Eldridge, Barrie, Ont.; Sarah Fillier, Georgetown, Ont.; Brianne Jenner, Oakville, Ont.; Sarah Nurse, Hamilton; Emily Clark, Saskatoon; Emma Maltais, Burlington, Ont.; Marie-Philip Poulin, Beauceville, Que.; Blayre Turnbull, Stellarton, N.S.; Kristin O’Neill, Oakville, Ont.; Sarah Potomak, Aldergrove, B.C.; Jamie Lee Rattray, Kanata, Ont.; Victoria Bach, Milton, Ont.
Head coach: Troy Ryan, Spryfield, N.S.
Assistant coaches: Kori Cheverie, New Glasgow, N.S.; Alison Domenico, Ottawa; Caroline Ouellette, Montreal.
Goaltending coach: Brad Kirkwood, Calgary.
Video coach: James Emery, Calgary.
The roster – three goaltenders, seven defence and 13 forwards – was selected by head coach Troy Ryan, in consultation with Gina Kingsbury, director of hockey operations, and Cherie Piper, senior manager of player development and scouting, along with the rest of the scouting and coaching staffs.
“It is unusual to play in a world championship and an Olympics in a single year, but this opportunity allows us to evaluate ourselves against the best in the world as we start our new four-year Olympic cycle,” said Kingsbury in a statement. “We are fortunate to have familiarity among our coaching staff and players who know what it takes to win.
“We had an extremely competitive camp and we believe we have assembled an experienced team that will give us the best chance to compete once again for a gold medal.”
The 10-team tournament features Canada in Group A with Finland, Japan, Switzerland and the United States, while Group B includes Czechia, host Denmark, Germany, Hungary and Sweden.
Canada opens the tournament against Finland on Aug. 25, and faces Switzerland on Aug. 27 and Japan on Aug. 28 before closing the preliminary round against its rivals from the United States on Aug. 30.
Prior to the start of women’s worlds, Canada will play a pair of pre-tournament games against Denmark on Aug. 20 and the United States on Aug. 23.
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