To catch you up in case you missed it, Caps forward Brendan Leipsic has been involved in a hacked IG messages scandal, where crude group chats of his leaked onto the internet where he said misogynistic things about women, including the wives and girlfriends of fellow hockey players
Yesterday as a result his brother, who was also involved, was cut from his college hockey team
And today the Caps terminated Brendan's contract, as expected.
I wrote this in yesterday's blog and spent some time talking about it with other people:
Now, obviously people say stuff in their private group chats that would destroy them in the real world. I don't think there's a reason to say otherwise. It'd be plain silly to act like we are all saints and don't make crude remarks.
That being said though, when messages like that leak, to the extent his did, you have to be vigilant about it. You cannot allow a player to represent your team who is on record making those sorts of remarks. You just can't. It's a bad look for everyone involved.
Those DMs leaking have now ruined his career. Yes, he is responsible for the words he says. Yes, being an athlete puts you in a bigger spotlight and you have to be way more careful. Yes, what he said was awful. What we have to decide is how much we should let private DMs dictate a person's career and livelihood when we all know we are guilty of similar ourselves.
I feel even saying something that simple is considered SO taboo. Everyone wants to act like they are perfect, but you are lying if you haven't hopped onto a group message and made a snide comment about a friend's significant other. As an ugly dude myself, I know some ex-girlfriends group chats have absolutely skewered me every way a man can be skewered. But we all do it. Why are we so afraid to admit that?
So when I type that, people think I'm defending what Brendan said, which I'm not. You cannot in good faith share a locker room with him after those messages leak. And Leipsic's juice ain't worth the squeeze. You don't keep a 4th liner around who will be that big of a distraction, who talks that way about his teammates. And honestly I don't care about him doing coke, whatever, not sure why people care about victimless "crimes" like that.
What I'm trying to do in this blog is not defend what he said, but rather try to discuss what this means moving forward. Leipsic is sort of the sacrificial lamb for this type of thing- he is going to lose millions of dollars in future earnings and it will teach every other player in every other league a lesson- don't put anything like that on the record. Shit, not just athletes, fucking EVERYONE. Imagine if your boss could see what you say about him/her in your texts? Unemployment city.
Is it fair to use leaked messages against someone? Once they are out, yes. You can't put the toothpaste back into the tube. You can't let a guy represent your organization after all that comes out. That's obvious. Does he get another shot in the league? We'll see. I'm a 2nd chance guy. I also think the players will police themselves. Leipsic will eat knuckle sandwiches until the players decide he's paid his penance. Or he'll go play in the KHL for a couple seasons. I don't know.
I think I asked more questions than gave answers in this blog because I don't think there is a definitive answer to any of this. I think we can all agree, if you're going to talk shit, do it in person, not on your phone or in DMs. And don't talk about players' wives like that. After this fallout, I think everyoneeee is going to be wayyyy more careful.