Flyers

NHL players post messages to spark dialogue on racial injustice following death of George Floyd

NHL players post messages to spark dialogue on racial injustice following death of George Floyd

NHL players are not always the most active on social media. They're down-to-earth athletes, seldom saying look at me or hear what I have to say.

That's completely understandable.

Many, though, have posted messages amid the protests across the United States following the tragic death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25. Floyd was killed in police custody after Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee into the 46-year-old black man's neck.

Current and former players shared powerful messages about recognizing the issue of racism and racial injustice — and challenging everyone to come together to make strides in solving the problem.

The messages are important. Listening is also important. Whether somebody sent out a message or not, let's hope reading, listening, discussing and acting can all spark change.

Below are some of the messages from across the league:

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Canadiens head coach Claude Julien hospitalized with chest pain

Canadiens head coach Claude Julien hospitalized with chest pain

Canadiens head coach Claude Julien has been hospitalized because of chest pain, the team announced Thursday.

Julien is not expected to return to the bench for the Canadiens' best-of-seven first-round playoff series against the Flyers. Assistant coach Kirk Muller will take over head coaching duties in the interim.

Julien was behind the bench leading Montreal in Game 1 Wednesday night at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto. The Flyers beat the Canadiens, 2-1, while the series continues Friday with Game 2 at 3 p.m. ET.

Here is a statement from Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin, via the team's official website:

Good afternoon. I'm here to inform you of the reason Claude Julien was not here this morning at practice. Claude experienced chest pain during the night. We immediately consulted our doctors and it was agreed to transfer him to the hospital by ambulance. He's presently there and he's undergoing tests to determine the exact nature of his condition. This has nothing to do with COVID.

We don't expect him to be back during this series against the Flyers. Kirk, Dominique [Ducharme] and Luke [Richardson] will share the responsibility, however, Kirk is the associate head coach and he will assume the responsibility of head coach until Claude's return.  

We understand that Kirk does not speak French, but these are exceptional circumstances and we're asking you for your understanding. Out of respect for Claude and his family, I will not answer any further questions about his medical condition.

The veteran coach led the Bruins to a Stanley Cup championship in 2011. The 60-year-old began his NHL head coaching career in Montreal and has been with the club for parts of seven seasons.

"There’s no doubt that there’s a deep bond and a deep respect because we know the jobs that we’re doing," Flyers head coach Alain Vigneault said about Julien before the series.

Vigneault, 59, also began his NHL head coaching career in Montreal. From 1981-83, Vigneault and Julien were teammates on the Central Hockey League's Salt Lake Golden Eagles.

"I didn't see him after the game," Vigneault said Thursday afternoon in a video interview following practice. "I've known Claude since I was 20, so we go way back, good friends. I'm going to reach out with him; I just found out the news, I want to say 20 minutes ago, just before jumping on the bus. I'm not aware of exactly what happened."

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Flyers Talk podcast: The good, some bad and what's ahead for Canadiens series

Flyers Talk podcast: The good, some bad and what's ahead for Canadiens series

On the latest Flyers Talk podcast, NBC Sports Philadelphia's Brooke Destra and Jordan Hall discuss the good, some bad and what's ahead following the team's tight Game 1 win over the Canadiens.

From the goalie matchup to something important to remember, let's dive in:

1:15 — Flyers fans were nervous in Game 1; that's a good thing

3:30 — Have the Flyers been the best team in the tourney so far?

5:00 — Biggest takeaways from Game 1, good and bad

9:15 — Did the Flyers get under Carey Price's skin?

15:20 — How concerned are we about that shaky second period?

19:45 — Joel Farabee, so impressive, so smart

 24:50 — What do we think about Shayne Gostisbehere, Robert Hagg and the defensive pairs?

 29:35 — Something to remember ahead of Game 2

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