It’s been a turbulent year in the NHL, and for Commissioner Gary Bettman, and now, he’s been awarded with one of the least flattering awards.
Outsports, a sports news website highlighting LGBTQ issues and personalities in amateur and professional sports, awards one person or organization with the Outsports Asshole of the Year every year.
Last year, FIFA “won” the award, and Outsports said it was “the most lopsided ‘win’ in the history of that award.”
But the 2023 award was given to none other than Gary Bettman for his ‘assault’ on the LGBTQ community over the year.
“Just one year later, Bettman has topped FIFA. In terms of sheer assholedom, the only thing separating these two absolute legends is that Bettman has yet to sell the NHL’s soul to anti-LGBTQ nations like Qatar,” the website said in a statement.
The NHL and its pride controversy began in January when Ivan Provorov, the then-Philadelphia Flyers defenseman, refused to participate in warmups because his team wore rainbow-themed jerseys.
It didn’t take long for other players to join Provorov, and several teams soon canceled their Pride jerseys.
This summer, Bettman announced that the NHL would cancel Pride jerseys in the upcoming season, as well as Pride tape on sticks.
“Bettman was declaring war on his own game’s equipment and, make no mistake, the LGBTQ community. It was one of the most insane policies a commissioner of a major sport had ever enacted — especially in response to an act of prejudice,” Outsports said.
To finish the article about Bettman winning the award, Outsports said, ‘After all of his efforts, the NHL’s best Pride event will be the day Bettman resigns.’