The National Hockey League responded very quickly following player Sean Avery's comments about his former girlfriend. Avery went on tape during an interview and said
"I am really happy to be back in Calgary, I love Canada. I just want to comment on how it's become like a common thing in the NHL for guys to fall in love with my sloppy seconds. I don't know what that's about. Enjoy the game tonight."
The comment was directed towards another player, Dion Phaneuf, and Phaneuf's girlfriend Elisha Cuthbert, whom Avery used to date.
NHL Commissioner, Gary Bettman, responded:
"Mr. Avery has been warned repeatedly about his conduct and comments, which have too often been at odds with the manner in which his more than 700 fellow players conduct themselves. Playing in the National Hockey League is a privilege, requiring a high standard of personal behavior. Mr. Avery forfeits that privilege for six games. Mr. Avery has expressed remorse for his recent comments and has sought a professional anger management evaluation. I will require that he follow through with that process as a condition of his returning to the ice and that he complies with any and all recommendations."
This is a fantastically unprecedented punishment for sexism in the sports arena. As you might imagine, there are a lot of fans and sports writers who have criticized this move as "unnecessary" and "extreme". However, it has been very interesting to note that many of the older players have supported the suspension and also condemned the remarks.
Mike Domitrz, Executive Director of The Safe Dates Project, taped a youtube video response in support of the NHL's actions. It can be found here.