Blackhawks

Messier: Blackhawks' Toews is inspirational on and off the ice

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Messier: Blackhawks' Toews is inspirational on and off the ice

Prior to Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Blackhawks and Lightning, Mark Messier went 1-on-1 with CSN's Chris Boden to discuss Jonathan Toews and the team's success.

Toews, along with Ryan Getzlaf and Andrew Ladd, is nominated for the Mark Messier award, given "to the player who exemplifies great leadership qualities to his team, on and off the ice during the regular season."

Messier has nothing but high praise for the Blackhawks captain.

"I know how much pressure is put on a captain at an early age," said Messier. "Jonathan came in here when he was named captain early and has never taken a backwards step. He's grown into an incredible captain, leader, inspirational on and off the ice. The way he's carried himself, the messaging to the fans, his initiatives that he's involved in off the ice -- what more can you say? Easy guy to like on and off the ice."

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Part of a dynasty himself with the Edmonton Oilers in the 1980s, Messier gives his take on if the Blackhawks should be considered a dynasty if they win their third Stanley Cup in six years.

"Certainly gotta be in the conversation especially with the challenges that we have nowadays to keep a team together and a competitive team together," said Messier. "It's just incredible. When you're on the run that Chicago has been on for the last few years, there's a lot of bouquets thrown around, not only from management and ownership but also from the players on the ice that are logging the minutes.

"No one person wins alone. This has been a team effort not only on the ice but off the ice, and an incredible, incredible story if they're able to go on and win again this year."

See what else Messier had to say in the video above.

Capitals' Devante Smith-Pelly speaks out about 'racially charged chanting' at United Center

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AP

Capitals' Devante Smith-Pelly speaks out about 'racially charged chanting' at United Center

After being on the receiving end of some racist taunts while he was in the penalty box during Saturday's game against the Blackhawks, Capitals winger Devante Smith-Pelly spoke publicly about the incident.

Smith-Pelly, a 25-year-old Canadian, reacted to the fans while he was in the box, going up to them from the other side of the glass. He addressed questions from the media about the incident on Sunday.

"I just heard some chanting, some, I guess, racially charged chanting," Smith-Pelly said. "You can tell by my reaction that I got pretty upset.

"What was said this time around crossed the line."

The Capitals released a statement about the incident:

"The Washington Capitals are extremely disappointed by the intolerant behavior extended toward Devante Smith-Pelly by a select group of fans during Saturday night's game against the Chicago Blackhawks at United Center. The Capitals organization strives to be inclusive and has zero tolerance concerning any form of racism. Such behavior is unacceptable and has no place in hockey or society. As such, it is crucial to confront such appalling conduct, and the Capitals extend their appreciation to the Blackhawks organization and United Center security for swiftly removing the fans from the game."

The Blackhawks released a statement after the game with a similar tone.

Smith-Pelly said this has happened previously in his career.

"It's sad that in 2018 we're still talking about the same thing over and over," Smith-Pelly said. "It's sad that athletes like myself 30, 40 years ago were standing in the same spot saying the same thing. You'd think there'd be some sort of change or progression, but we're still working towards it I guess and we're going to keep working towards it."

The Capitals released the full interview.

Blackhawks release statement following incident that happened during game vs. Capitals

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AP

Blackhawks release statement following incident that happened during game vs. Capitals

Four fans at the United Center were thrown out of Saturday's Blackhawks game for taunting Washington Capitals forward Devante Smith-Pelly with racist remarks.

Midway through the third period, Smith-Pelly, who is black, was in the penalty box when fans shouted "basketball, basketball, basketball" at him, the Washington Post reported.

Here is a GIF of Smith-Pelly's interaction with the fans:

After the game, the Blackhawks released this statement:

Capitals head coach Barry Trotz also had this to say about the incident: