Washington's capitals and NHL responded after misogynistic social media messages attributed to Capitals striker Brendan Leipsic caused a stir online on Wednesday.
In a series of messages on Instagram, Leipsic used obscene language to make disparaging comments about women's appearance, including calling Tanner Pearson's wife a former Canucks teammate fat.
Under a photo of current Capital teammates Nic Dowd and Garnet Hathaway, Leipsic wrote "(Expletive) they are losers". Leipsic played much of the 2019-20 season on the fourth row alongside Dowd and Hathaway.
In other posts, he claimed to be "significantly" loud and seemed to say he loved cocaine, although it is unclear whether these messages were serious or playful.
Jack Rodewald of the Florida Panthers also participated in the group chat in question.
"The National Hockey League strongly condemns the misogynist and reprehensible committed by players Brendan Leipsic and Jack Rodewald in a private group chat that appeared on social media," NHL said in a statement. “There is no place in our League for such statements, attitudes and behavior, no matter the forum. We will address this inexcusable conduct with the clubs and players involved. "
A Capitals spokesman said he would deal with the problem internally with Leipsic.
Leipsic – who deleted your Instagram account as his posts spread across the Internet – then he tweeted an apology.
"Yesterday my friend Instagram an account was hacked and an individual circulated images that are representative of private conversations that I was part of, ”Leipsic I wrote. “I fully recognize how inappropriate and offensive these comments are and sincerely apologize to everyone for my actions. I am committed to learning from it and becoming a better person, taking the time to determine how to move forward in a responsible and meaningful way. I'm really sorry."
Before the season was suspended, Leipsic, 25, was playing in his first season with the Capitals for a one-year contract and left the team when he acquired winger Ilya Kovalchuk. He has jumped around five teams in the past five years.
The following video contains screenshots of Leipsic's comments, some of which are obscene.
Brendan Leipsic is DONE lmao pic.twitter.com/9IFntetdCS
– Matteo Fabrizi 🇮🇹 (@HockeyXT) May 6, 2020
National Hockey League Declaration. pic.twitter.com/aZm1M2wZBk