There have been several protests following George Floyd's murder in Minneapolis. Those marching are calling for change, but San Jose Sharks forward Evander Kane is hoping for white athletes to join them. He appeared on ESPN's First Take and specifically called for NFL star Tom Brady and NHL star Sidney Crosby to show their support for the protests.
"We need so many more athletes that don't look like me speaking out about this, having the same amount of outrage that I have inside, and using that to voice their opinion, to voice their frustration," Kane said. "Because that's the only way it's going to change. We've been outraged for hundreds of years, and nothing has changed. It's time for guys like Tom Brady and Sidney Crosby and those type of figures to speak up about what is right and clearly in this case, what is unbelievably wrong. That's the only way we're going to actually create that unified anger to create that necessary change, especially when you talk about systematic racism."
Kane further explained during his ESPN appearance that it's uncommon for NHL players to speak up when it comes to social injustices. He said that hockey has a very different culture than other sports in terms of speaking out and that this is part of the problem. Kane said that his fellow players are "really scared" to speak their mind and stand up for what is right.
While Brady has not posted anything about Floyd's murder or the ongoing protests, Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph has. He posted a photo on Instagram that showed him standing arm-in-arm with his African American teammates during the national anthem. Rudolph said that he had lived through the Cincinnati riots in 2001 and that he didn't imagine he would be living through something "even more tragic" nearly 20 years later. The tight end vowed to continue doing everything in his power to create change.
Similarly, Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow has been very vocal about pushing for change. The number one pick in the 2020 NFL Draft tweeted that the "black community needs our help" and that this is not a political issue. He said that this is a human rights issue and that everyone needs to open their ears, listen and speak.
Kane is hoping that white athletes will push for change following Floyd's death, and several are doing just that. Whether it is Randy Orton, Rudolph or Ronda Rousey, they have voiced their support. Now Kane hopes that Brady and Crosby will weigh in.