An affidavit filed in an Ontario court case suggests Hockey Canada has maintained a fund to pay for uninsured liabilities, including sexual abuse claims.
The detail is included in a July 2021 affidavit sworn by Glen McCurdie, who was then Hockey Canada’s vice-president of insurance and risk management, as part of a lawsuit launched by an injured player in Ontario.
“Hockey Canada maintains a reserve in a segregated account to pay for any such uninsured liabilities as they arise,” McCurdie’s affidavit said. It goes on to say that “uninsured liabilities include potential claims for historical sexual abuse.”
Hockey Canada did not immediately respond to an email from The Canadian Press requesting comment on McCurdie’s affidavit.
The sport’s national body has been under intense scrutiny since news of an alleged sexual assault following a 2018 gala in London, Ont., involving eight unidentified players — including members of that year’s world junior team — and subsequent settlement broke in May. None of the allegations have been proven in court.
Support for survivors
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence and is in need of support, those in Canada can find province-specific centres, crisis lines and services here. For readers in America, a list of resources and references can be found here.
Scott Smith, the organization’s president and COO, and outgoing CEO Tom Renney were grilled by parliamentarians during a Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage meeting last month on both the matter and where settlement funds came from.
McCurdie, who retired in December, did not attend proceedings due to the death of his father, but has been subpoenaed by the committee for a subsequent round of meetings slated to begin next Tuesday.
Hockey Canada has had federal funding cut off because of its handling of the case and settlement, while a number of corporations paused sponsorship dollars.
The organization released a carefully worded open letter Thursday with a number of promises, including a pledge to reopen an incomplete third-party investigation into the alleged assault.
“We know we have not done enough to address the actions of some members of the 2018 national junior team or to end the culture of toxic behaviour within our game,” Hockey Canada wrote last week.
“For that we unreservedly apologize.”
Smith, who took over from Renney as CEO on July 1, testified on Parliament Hill last month Hockey Canada reported three sexual assault complaints in recent years, including the London incident, but wouldn’t discuss the other two in front of the committee.
He added there have been up to two complaints of sexual misconduct each of the last five or six years.
Hockey Canada said in its open letter that participation by players in the third-party investigation into the London incident will be mandatory — unlike before — and that anyone who declines will be banned from all activities and programs.
Smith testified last month “12 or 13” of the 19 players were interviewed before the original and incomplete investigation concluded in September 2020.
The woman who made the assault allegation was seeking just over $3.5 million in damages from Hockey Canada, the Canadian Hockey League and the unnamed players.
The woman’s lawyer said in an email last week his client, who did not take part in the initial probe or speak with police, “will be participating in the Hockey Canada investigation and will not be commenting to media at this time.”
Details of the settlement have not been made public, but Smith testified to parliamentarians last month Hockey Canada liquidated a portion of its investments to pay for the settlement, adding that no public money was used.
Minister of Sport Pascal St-Onge ordered an audit to make sure that’s indeed the case.
The NHL is also conducting an investigation because some of the players are in the league, but isn’t making participation mandatory.
The Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage is set to meet Tuesday and Wednesday next week to hear from a long list of witnesses, including McCurdie.
The committee requested and received a redacted copy of the non-disclosure agreement related to the settlement along with a long list of Hockey Canada communications by Friday’s deadline.
Arizona Coyotes defenceman Conor Timmins, a member of the 2018 world junior team, became the latest player to deny involvement in the alleged assault Monday.
“No one alleges that I was present or involved and I have no personal knowledge of what occurred,” Timmins said in a statement released on social media by his agency, Quartexx Hockey. “I co-operated fully with the initial Hockey Canada investigation and will continue to co-operate in any other investigations as required.”
Victor Mete, who recently signed with the Toronto Maple Leafs, issued a statement last month denying involvement. The defenceman said he was out of the country on a family vacation at the time of the 2018 gala in London.
Colorado Avalanche blue-liner and Conn Smythe Trophy winner Cale Makar told reporters in Denver before the Stanley Cup final he also wasn’t among the group of eight players in question.
Latvia in QF, Slovakia out – IIHF
The teams had met only three times previously in World Junior play, most recently in 2012, and Czechia won all three by a combined score of 19-5.
Both goalies were playing in their third of four games for their respective teams, Jan Bednar having the better GAA than Bruveris – 3.36 to 3.84 – but it was Bruveris who made the difference today.
“We believed we could win,” Darels Dukurs said. “We just played one game at a time and gave it our best. We played like a team and fought for each other. We stayed focus the whole time.”
The Latvians got just the start they needed, jumping into a 2-0 lead by the halfway point of the period. Martins Lavins got the opener on a fine rush by Harijs Brants. He drove down the left wing and got the puck in front to Lavins, who quickly re-directed the puck between the open pads of Jan Bednar at 4:30.
They made it 2-0 at 12:21 off another great pass from behind the goal line. This time it was Raimonds Vitolins who fed Rainers Rullers in front. Rullers lifted a high shot over the shoulder of Bednar.
Latvia then took two successive penalties. The PK was letter perfect on the first and dodged a bullet on the second before finally succumbing. Michal Gut took a back-door pass that left him with nothing but net to shoot at, but he shot wide and looked heavenward for answers that could be more easily found on his stick tape.
But moments later he was given another opportunity through a hard pass cross crease from captain Jan Mysak, and this one he didn’t miss.
The Vitolins-Rullers combo had another sensational chance early in the second to make it a 3-1 game, but this time Bednar came across and made a great save on Rullers. Latvia had two power plays soon after but couldn’t capitalize, and it started to feel as though they had squandered chances to take control of the game.
Indeed, Czechia tied the score at 9:33 on a broken play. Captain Ralfs Bergmanis blocked a shot in front, but it landed with Stanislav Svozil. He moved in and roofed a backhand over Bruveris, and that feeling of lost opportunities care to the fore.
But credit to Latvia, and to Bergmanis in particular. He put his team ahead at 11:15 after David Jiricek made a poor clearing. Bergmanis’s quick point shot fooled Bednar and gave the underdogs another lead. Bruveris scored again six minutes later on a similar shot during a power play when his long wrister beat Bednar high.
Bednar was replaced by Tomas Suchanek to start the third, but he faced only three shots as his teammates fired 17 on Brumanis without scoring. Czechia had a golden chance to cut the lead midway through the period when Lavins closed his hand on the puck in the crease, resulting in a penalty shot. But Mysak was stoned by Bruveris and kept it a 4-2 game.
Rory MacDonald announces retirement after 2022 PFL Playoffs exit – MMA Fighting
Rory MacDonald is stepping away from competition after a devastating loss.
The former Bellator welterweight champion and longtime UFC contender announced his retirement on Sunday, one day after losing by first-round TKO to Dilano Taylor in the 2022 PFL semifinals.
MacDonald, 33, broke the news via Instagram.
“My time has come to put the gloves down for good,” MacDonald wrote. “I’m so thankful for this sport and every person I’ve been able to meet along the way.
“I started this sport as a 14-year-old kid, I still remember my first day and knowing this is what I want to spend my life doing. The passion for martial arts and becoming a pro MMA fighter gave me hope and a way to a better life! And I’m so thankful to God for putting that gym Toshido MMA in kelowna in my path. It truly changed the direction of my life and saved me!
“What an adventure this career has been, 17 years of professional fighting. It all came and went so fast! So many painful trainings that are etched into my being, travelling to all parts of the planet and meeting so many people.
“I’ve learned so much about myself through this career, not all of it good. And I’ve made so many mistakes along the way, but here I am 33 years old a better man because of those mistakes, to which I’m very grateful I’ve grown up.”
MacDonald went on to thank fans for their support, as well as the UFC, Bellator, and the PFL.
Debuting in 2005, MacDonald quickly emerged as one of the hottest prospects in his native Canada, beginning his career 10-0. He eventually took his talents to Montreal’s Tristar Gym, where he trained alongside UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre. MacDonald joined the UFC in 2010, where he won eight of his first 10 fights, including a dominant decision win over future welterweight champion Tyron Woodley.
In 2017, MacDonald signed with Bellator and captured a welterweight title by beating Douglas Lima in just his second bout for the promotion. He successfully defended his belt twice before ceding it back to Lima in the finals of a grand prix tournament. MacDonald also unsuccessfully challenged Gegard Mousasi for the Bellator middleweight championship.
The last leg of MacDonald’s career came with the PFL. He signed with the league in 2019, but failed to recapture his previous success, going just 2-4 including the stunning loss to Taylor that was the final fight of his career.
Near lead, Cameron Smith penalized a day after playing ball from 'wrong place' – Golf Channel
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – As if his week hasn’t been eventful enough, Cameron Smith began the final round of the FedEx St. Jude Championship four shots off the lead after being assessed a two-stroke penalty for “playing [his] ball from the wrong place” at No. 4 on Saturday.
After starting the day at 11 under and two shots off the lead held by J.J. Spaun, Smith was informed by PGA Tour rules officials that he was now 9 under and four back after it was determined he violated Rule 14.7.
Officials discovered the violation after reviewing footage from Round 3 of Smith’s drop at the fourth hole, a par 3. The footage shows Smith dropping and playing his next shot from the hazard line, which is a violation of Rule 17.1 (when ball is in penalty area), turning his bogey-4 on the hole into a triple-bogey 6.
“When I asked him the question [if his golf ball was on the hazard line], unfortunately, he said to me, ‘No, the ball was definitely touching the line,’” said Gary Young, the PGA Tour’s chief referee. “At that point there’s no turning back. That was a moment where I know that the player has knowledge that the ball was touching the line, he just simply didn’t understand the rule that it requires the entire ball to be outside of the penalty area and in his relief area.”
The ruling took on added significance given Smith’s position on the FedExCup points list, No. 2, and his quest to overtake Scottie Scheffler atop the world ranking. The Australian will move to No. 1 on both lists with a victory Sunday at TPC Southwind.
“His answer to me is, ‘The rules are the rules,’” Young said. “He just accepted the two-stroke penalty … he very calmly left the office and he’s just going about his business for the day.”
It was yet another headline for Smith who has dominated them this week. According to Australian golfer Cam Percy and a report in The Telegraph, Smith is poised to jump to LIV Golf, the Saudi-backed rival league. Smith has repeatedly declined to address the reports.
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