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Olbermann, Ingraham, Among Others From Outside Hockey React to Reimer

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Credit: Hockey Shots/Dean Tait

This story is still making headlines beyond hockey.

Last Saturday, San Jose Sharks goaltender James Reimer decided to sit out of warm-ups during the team’s Pride Night. In his statement, the 35-year-old cited his Christian beliefs for not wanting to sport the team’s Pride jerseys.

On social media, many high-profile people shared their opinions on the matter. Here’s a representative spectrum of the diverse views.

Let’s start with a couple surprise ones from outside of hockey.

Liberal pundit and former Sportscenter host Keith Olbermann poked fun at Reimer while reacting to the news.

Two-time NFL Pro Bowl wide receiver Doug Baldwin Jr. mentioned his faith while disagreeing with Reimer’s choice:

National Women’s Soccer League player Bethany Balcer also talked about her faith in reaction to Reimer’s decision.

In hockey, many spoke against Reimer’s decision.

Madison Packer, current captain of the PHF’s Metropolitan Riveters, had this to say about Reimer’s religious justification:

Brian Burke, the current Pittsburgh Penguins President of Hockey Operations, has long been a strong advocate of LGBTQ+ rights.

Brock McGillis, a former junior player and among the first openly gay professional men’s hockey players, is a strong advocate for creating more LGBTQ+ inclusion in hockey.

On the San Jose Sharks’ own broadcast, NBC’s Tara Slone voiced her frustration with James Reimer’s actions.

Nashville Predators 2020 third-rounder Luke Prokop put out a statement. Prokop made history in July of 2021 as the first player under NHL contract to come out as gay.

There were many, however, who did voice their support for Reimer’s decision to not take part in the warmup.

From outside of hockey, evangelist Franklin Graham, son of Billy Graham, stood up for Reimer:

Steve Cortes—a campaign adviser to Donald Trump and contributor for Fox News, CNN, and CNBC—vocalized support for Reimer.

Right-wing political pundit Collin Rugg offered his two cents: This is what courage looks like.”

Jon Root, former in-arena host with the San Jose Sharks, took to Twitter to back the goaltender.

Fox News even ran a story about the situation.

Back to hockey, they had nine-time NHL All Star and former San Jose Sharks forward Jeremy Roenick share his opinion on Reimer’s decision with host Laura Ingraham.

Roenick criticized how the San Jose Sharks and NHL handled Reimer’s decision: “They threw him to the wolves of social media, especially in one of the most liberal and probably most abusive areas in the country. I don’t think that’s fair. As a teammate, I would’ve been pretty mad at that.”

Ingraham said of Reimer and his forerunner Ivan Provorov: “They’re crucifying these men.”

This story is still developing.

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