Minnesota wild Mar 7, 2023; Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Wild left wing Marcus Foligno (17) plays the puck in the corner against the Calgary Flames in the second period at Xcel Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Blewett-USA TODAY Sports

On Tuesday night, the Minnesota Wild hosted their annual Pride Night celebration game where the team previously announced that it would be wearing special rainbow-colored warmup jerseys ahead of the team’s game against the Calgary Flames in a show of support of the LGBTQIA+ community. But shortly before the game, the team scrapped that plan.

According to a report from The Athletic, the team previously announced that it would be wearing the special jerseys before the game and that the jersey would then be auctioned off. But the players never wore the jerseys and that post has since been deleted.

“Part of the themed game programming includes custom-designed Wild Pride jerseys worn by the team during pre-game warmups,” the post on the auction site said before it was removed. “The custom warmup jerseys will be signed and auctioned off starting March 7.”

The Minnesota Wild said the last-minute decision not to wear the jerseys was “an organizational decision” and the team released a vague statement expressing support for the LGBTQIA+ community while not actually explaining why the team elected not to wear the rainbow jerseys.

“The Minnesota Wild organization is proud to continue our support of the LGBTQIA+ community by hosting our second annual Pride Night tonight, which we are celebrating in many ways. It is important to host nights like this to show all players, fans, and the LGBTQIA+ community that hockey is for everyone. We will continue to utilize our platform to strengthen our community and create a greater state of hockey,” the Wild said in a statement.

It was certainly a controversial move, and the team was blasted for it on Twitter.

It’s fair to wonder if the NHL’s “Hockey is for Everyone” initiative actually means anything.

[Michael Russo]