After a 3-1 loss in Vancouver last night, Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith had an exchange with Vancouver sportscaster Karen Thompson that caused the sports world to rise up with jeers of sexism. Keith appeared to slash Daniel Sedin on a Canucks goal, but was not called for a penalty. After the game, Thompson tried to bring up the slash to Keith and prodded him about it not being called. Keith didn't appreciate the line of questioning, which led to a weird exchange of Keith derisively saying she should be a "female referee" and that Thompson didn't know the game.
Immediately, alarm bells went off about Keith being a misogynistic neanderthal and taking us back 30 years to when female reporters weren't welcomed in locker rooms. However, after listening to the full exchange, I'm not sure Keith's crime here is as much sexism as it is a graceless tete a tete with any reporter that would challenge him in the locker room. Here's the full audio...
The female referee comment is what leads you to believe Keith may be acting in a sexist manner here. It's a dumb thing to say, but it sounds like he's more upset over Thompson needling him about a penalty that wasn't called. The question is whether or not he'd make the same comment about knowing the game as he would to a male reporter that admitted he couldn't skate, which Keith probably would. In that case, Keith's crime isn't necessarily sexism (although he walks dangerously close to the line) as it is the backwards viewpoint that anyone who can't play the game at a high level has no right to comment on it.
That's a classic retort from an athlete who's boxed into a corner by a reporter and is almost as lame as saying my dad could beat your dad in a fight. If that were the case, pretty much everyone in media and analytics in any industry would be without a job and we'd live in a world where Mike Milbury and Pierre McGuire would announce every single hockey game. Surely that's not a world Duncan Keith would want to live in, is it?
H/T Chicago Tribune
The guy could have said she doesn't know the game. He could have called the question stupid. He could have criticised a number of things. Instead his first instinct was to make reference to the fact she's a woman and use that "against" her. "Balance" indeed, it's completely ignoring the point. If the reporter is a black man and Keith makes reference to the number of black referees in the league, do you think he's still playing next week?
If his statements were controversial then this country has been totally taken over by the fascist thought police.