The NHL held a “moment of reflection,” but then the Bruins and Lightning engaged in a Game 3 that Tampa Bay won 7-1. Game 3 of Islanders – Flyers was already underway when news picked up about games being canceled in other sports, while there was no “moment of reflection” before Game 3 of the Stars – Avalanche.
Again, Islanders forward Anders Lee mentioned that he just heard of games being cancelled or postponed right after the Flyers’ win. But what about members of the Bruins and Lightning, as there was more time to decide against playing their Game 3?
Meanwhile, there was no moment of reflection before Avalanche – Stars Game 3. Nazem Kadri and others gave similar answers to what you’ll see below, aside from this great point:
Nazem Kadri: "Eventually words get stale and it's about action and making a difference."
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) August 27, 2020
Bergeron, Chara, Shattenkirk among those explaining Bruins, Lightning playing Game 3
For what it’s worth, Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said he would have supported players if they didn’t want to play.
Patrice Bergeron and Zdeno Chara said a lot of the right things during their postgame press conference. Chara indicated that there wasn’t enough time to make the call not to play in Game 3:
Patrice Bergeron and Zdeno Chara on the NBA protests: pic.twitter.com/7NSBUJOylQ
— Wes Crosby (@OtherNHLCrosby) August 27, 2020
[NBC 2020 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFF HUB]
Going to the other end of the ice, Lightning defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk echoed such thoughts. Interestingly, Shattenkirk also indicated something Anders Lee and others did: that it’s something “we’ll address going forward.”
Kevin Shattenkirk said #tblightning didn’t find out about other league’s boycotts until they got to rink. Decided to play. “It’s something we’ll have to address going forward.” Said everyone takes different actions, key is making sure “your voice is heard”
— Joe Smith (@JoeSmithTB) August 27, 2020
Could future NHL playoff games get postponed? If so, it would solidify Matt Dumba commenting that the NHL can be “late to the party” on many of these matters.
Ultimately, all three Wednesday playoff games happened as scheduled, though. Such decisions prompted plenty of criticism, which you can read about in posts like these. With some time to reflect on the NHL’s reaction to how other sports are protesting the police shooting of Jacob Blake, Evander Kane called it “straight up insulting.”
If you want an idea of the response — again, it didn’t happen before Avs vs. Stars — watch the “moment of reflection” in the video above this post’s headline.
• Stanley Cup Playoffs Second Round schedule
James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.