CHICAGO — Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz wants the Hockey Hall of Fame to cover an assistant coach’s name engraved on the Stanley Cup after the assistant was accused of sexually assaulting a player during the team’s march to the 2010 championship.
In a letter to Hall of Fame president Lanny MacDonald, dated Thursday, Wirtz wrote that Brad Aldrich’s behavior excluded him from inclusion in the Cup, and that the team made a mistake by submitting his name.
“I humbly request that the Hockey Hall of Fame study the ‘x-ing’ of his name in the Stanley Cup,” Wirtz wrote. “Although there is nothing he can undo what he did, leaving his name on the sport’s most prestigious trophy seems very wrong.”
The Hall of Fame cannot remove a name from the Stanley Cup, but it can decide to engrave a series of X’s to cover it up. In his letter, Wirtz referred to the case of Basil Pocklington, the father of the former Edmonton owner whose name was engraved on the cup after the Oilers won the 1984 title, but then it was covered at the request of the NHL because Basil Pocklington had nothing to do. Do with the team.
Wirtz writes: “This decision reflects, among other things, the Grail’s history of engraving errors, misspellings, and errors that ended up in silver, or were corrected after the fact.”
ESPN first reported about the message. The Associated Press left a message on Friday requesting comment from the Hall of Fame.
Wirtz and the Blackhawks pick up parts of the franchise’s shattered reputation after it released a report on Tuesday detailing how top team leaders mishandled the allegations against Aldrich over a decade ago.
The independent review was conducted by a law firm by the panel in response to two court cases brought against the franchise: one by former first-round pick Kyle Beach alleging sexual assault by Aldrich in 2010, and the other by a former high school student who was Aldrich convicted of assault in Michigan .
Rocky Wirts said Tuesday that he and Danny Wirtz, his son and team CEO, were informed of the charges before Beach’s lawsuit was filed in May, an assertion by the owner that he also supported. Report by Jenner & Block.
The Associated Press does not usually identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they come forward publicly. Talk to the beach TSN on Wednesday and publish a statement He took to Twitter on Thursday to express his gratitude for the support he has received in the past two days.
Beach is scheduled to meet NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and Donald Fehr, the leader of the NHL Players Association, via separate Zoom calls on Saturday. Susan Logans, an attorney representing Beech in his lawsuit, said Veer’s time has been confirmed, and they are still working to finalize the schedule for the Bettman meeting.
Loggans said Bettman and Fehr called her and asked to meet Beach.
“Kyle’s reaction was that he’s glad they’re paying attention to what got their attention 10 years ago,” Logans told The Associated Press. “So he’s very eager to hear what they have to say.”
According to the Black Hawks’ report, Fehr was contacted twice about allegations related to Aldrich, including by a beach confidant. Fehr told investigators that he did not remember any of the two conversations, but did not deny that they happened.
Fehr said Wednesday night in a statement that there was “no doubt” that the system failed Petsch and “we are part of that system.”
Stan Bowman, the Chicago general manager and chief of hockey operations, resigned in the wake of the report, and the Black Hawks announced that Al Mac Isaacs, one of the team’s top hockey executives, was no longer with the organization.
The NHL imposed a $2 million fine on the team for “inadequate internal procedures of the organization and inadequate and inappropriate response”.
The fallout from what the Black Hawks did in 2010 — specifically a three-week period during the playoffs when they failed to act on Beech’s allegations, allowing Aldrich to stay around the team while celebrating the championship — reverberated throughout the NHL this week.
Florida Panthers coach Joel Quinville met Bateman on Thursday and then quit. Winnipeg Jets general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff spoke to Bettman on Friday, and the league announced that Cheveldayoff would not be disciplined.
Quenneville and Cheveldayoff were with the Blackhawks when Beach’s accusations were first reported to lead the team. Aldrich told investigators that the meeting was consensual.