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That Dragon's Not Breathing Fire

Last night we were treated to a heck of a hockey game as the Canucks beat Nashville 7-4. One of the highlights was an amazing penalty shot goal from Henrik Sedin of all people, that still had tongues wagging this morning. Not everyone enjoyed it however. One of those who didn't? W. Brett Wilson, of CBC's 'Dragon's Den' fame. He fired off a pathetic, sexist tweet aimed at Sedin. The problem? He's also part owner of the Predators.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

First, let's look at the goal, then the tweet that followed.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p>Really. One of the sisters scored?</p>&mdash; - W. Brett Wilson - (@WBrettWilson) <a href="">March 15, 2013</a></blockquote>
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Anyone who's a fan of the Canucks is pretty tired of seeing this reference. And hockey fans for the most part detest the ridiculous sexism involved, regardless of their team loyalty. The intent is always clear no matter how innocently the person saying it tries to paint it. They're girls, and I say they're girls because they're not men. They're weaker. It's bad when a fan says it. It's very bad when someone who's as well known as Wilson with his platform in the media and large following, says it. The real problem is that this is someone who is part of the NHL community.

It's still early, but I really think that all hockey fans against this type of garbage should be outraged. The NHL definitely needs to address this. I am not going to suggest what type of punishment (let's face it, the only possible punishment is a fine, something Mr. Wilson can easily afford), but the message it sends if they remain silent on it is terrible.

Wilson has issued an apology in the last hour for the record:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p><a href="">#Apology</a> - Being frustrated by the penalty shot call was and is no excuse for my unkind and uncalled for tweet at <a href="">#HenrikSedin</a>Sorry</p>&mdash; - W. Brett Wilson - (@WBrettWilson) <a href="">March 15, 2013</a></blockquote>
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Yes, it was unkind. Yes, it was uncalled for. But he has not acknowledged the two real problems here: a) that it was unacceptably sexist and b) that he in his position as part owner of the team Henrik scored on, clearly crossed a line. Wilson says he was frustrated by the call, yet he says nothing directed towards officiating. Could that be because something he says publicly like that could draw the ire of the NHL? That's what makes this tweet so infuriating. He was mindful of calling out the referees on a bad call knowing the league doesn't tolerate publicly chastising their officials, but had no problem with a sexist, bullying taunt of one of the league's top players.

The NHL has come a long way in it's efforts to be seen as a forward thinking league. They were the first pro league to embrace the You Can Play project. They've made efforts to promote the game to minorities to show that it's not just a game white people play. And they've worked with women's hockey at all levels, helping that sport develop and bring female fans into the game. Surely they can't be happy that one of their owners is saying that being female is something one should be embarrassed about.