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Flyers’ Provorov Declines Wearing Pride-Themed Warmup Jersey

Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ivan Provorov has drawn plenty of controversy after refusing to wear a pride-themed jersey during warmups.

Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ivan Provorov is drawing in plenty of criticism Tuesday evening, as he refused to wear a team-issued pride-theme jersey during warmups of the Flyers’ game against the Anaheim Ducks.

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The Flyers skated out for warmups wearing their pride-themed jerseys in support of the LGBTQ+ community, though it was quickly realized by those in attendance that Provorov was not on the ice with his teammates. While some assumed he may have suffered an injury prior to the game, that was quickly proven wrong as he was back out on the ice for puck drop.

Shortly afterward, the media got hold of the fact that Provorov chose to decline to take part in warmups as he did not want to wear the jersey. While within his right to do so, he was criticized by fans and many in the hockey community, prompting the Flyers themselves to send out a statement.

“The Philadelphia Flyers organization is committed to inclusivity and is proud to support the LGBTQ+ community. Many of our players are active in their support of local LGBTQ+ organizations, and we were proud to host our annual Pride Night again this year. The Flyers will continue to be strong advocates for inclusivity and the LGBTQ+ community.”

While the organization gave its own opinion on the matter, many waited to hear what members of the team itself had to say, in particular both John Tortorella and Provorov himself. Shortly after the game concluded, Torts gave his thoughts on the matter.

“I think the organization has sent out a release regarding the beliefs we have and how we feel about it, on really a great night” Tortorella said. “With Provy, he’s being true to himself and to his religion. This has to do with his belief in his religion. It’s one thing I respect about Provy, he’s always true to himself. So that’s where we’re at with that.” Provorov was quoted as saying, “I respect everyone. I respect everybody’s choices. My choice is to stay true to myself and my religion.” He did clarify his religion is Russian Orthodox.

Tortorella also admitted there were no discussions of sitting Provorov out of the lineup due to his decision.

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