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Professional hockey player refuses to wear LGBTQ jersey for pride round because it goes against the Bible
Featured Image Credit: Jason O. Watson (Sports) / Alamy Stock Photo. Anatoliy Cherkasov / Alamy Stock Photo

Professional hockey player refuses to wear LGBTQ jersey for pride round because it goes against the Bible

San Jose Sharks goalie James Reimer announced he would not be sporting a rainbow jersey during Saturday's pride night game.

San Jose Sharks goalie has opted not to wear to LGBTQIA+ jersey on the team’s pride night due to his Christian beliefs.

Fox Sports reported that while every other player was sporting rainbow colors at the SAP Center over the weekend, goalie James Reimer wanted to be excluded from the celebrations.

Leading up to the game, Reimer announced that he would not be sporting a pride jersey because it would conflict with the Bible.

"For all 13 years of my NHL career, I have been a Christian — not just in title, but in how I choose to live my life daily. I have a personal faith in Jesus Christ who died on the cross for my sins and, in response, asks me to love everyone and follow him," he said via the team’s Twitter account.

"I have no hate in my heart for anyone, and I have always strived to treat everyone that I encounter with respect and kindness.

"In this specific instance, I am choosing not to endorse something that is counter to my personal convictions which are based on the Bible, the highest authority in my life."

Following his remarks, the San Jose Sharks issued their own statement, explaining that while they do not waver in supporting the queer community, they respect each individual’s choice to exercise their freedom of speech.

They wrote: “We also acknowledge and accept the rights of individuals to express themselves, including how or whether they choose to express their beliefs, regardless of the cause or topic."

They added: “As an organization, we will not waver in our support of the LGBTQIA+ community and continue to encourage others to engage in active allyship.”

However, Reimer isn’t the only athlete to refuse to wear a pride jersey.

In January, Ivan Provorov, a defenseman for the Philadelphia Flyers, declined to wear a rainbow jersey during the team’s pride night game warm-ups against the Anaheim Ducks.

According to Fox News, after the game, the defenseman said: "I respect everybody’s choices.

“My choice is to stay true to myself and my religion. That’s all I’m going to say.”

Similarly, that same month, a couple of NBL players denied wearing singlets fashioning rainbow logos during the Pride Round match.

7News reported that numerous Cairns Taipans players said doing so would conflict with their freedom of choice.

The NBL pride jersey came three months after Melbourne United star Isaac Humphries became the league's first active openly gay player.

He announced the news via social media, revealing he had disclosed his sexuality to his teammates and explained that he had previously attempted to take his own life.

Topics: News, LGBTQ, Sport