J.T. Brown becomes 1st NHL player to protest during anthem
Son of former NFL player raised fist during Star-Spangled Banner
Tampa Bay Lightning forward J.T. Brown raised his right fist during the playing of the national anthem before the team's first road game of the season.
The 27-year-old Brown, who was scratched for Tampa Bay's season-opening win against Florida, remained standing throughout the anthem Saturday night. Brown, one of approximately 30 black players in the NHL, used the same protest before a preseason game against the Panthers last month.
"I wanted to do something to show my support. There's some issues that we have to talk about," Brown said. "I know there's going to be negative backlash, but in my heart I know I did what was right."
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling during the anthem in the preseason a year ago to make a statement about social inequality and police treatment of blacks in the United States.
Since then, the protest has spread to other sports. Brown is the son of former NFL running back Ted Brown, who played eight seasons for the Minnesota Vikings.