The Capitals have chosen to terminate the contract of forward Brendan Leipsic for his offensive social media comments, the team announced on Friday.
Leipsic has faced criticism from around the NHL when a private Instagram group chat containing offensive comments was made public on Wednesday. Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reported that general manager Brian MacLellan spoke to Leipsic on the phone Wednesday and was planning to meet with him face-to-face when the team reconvened. MacLellan ultimately decided not to wait that long to hand down punishment.
The Washington Capitals have placed Brendan Leipsic on unconditional waivers for purposes of terminating his contract.— CapitalsPR (@CapitalsPR) May 8, 2020
Leipsic came to Washington as a free agent on a one-year deal. After a strong start to the season on the fourth line, his production tapered off significantly. While it shouldn't matter, the team's decision to terminate his contract was likely made easier by the fact that he had been relegated to being a healthy scratch with the acquisition of Ilya Kovalchuk at the trade deadline. That, and the fact that linemates Nic Dowd and Garnet Hathaway were one of the subjects of Leipsic's comments. Leipsic had three goals and eight assists in 61 games for Washington.
Leipsic's brother, Jeremy, was removed from the University of Manitoba's hockey team on Thursday for taking part in the group conversation as well.
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