NHL Investigating Hockey Canada, Canadian Hockey League Sexual Assault Allegation

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVMay 27, 2022

NEWARK, NJ - MARCH 02:  A general view of the NHL Logo on the scoreboard during the National Hockey League game between the New Jersey Devils and the New York Islanders on March 2, 2021 at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ..(Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NHL announced Thursday that it is investigating an allegation that eight Canadian Hockey League players, including members of Canada's World Junior Championship hockey team, sexually assaulted a woman in 2018.

In a statement, the NHL called the alleged actions "abhorrent and reprehensible," and vowed to "determine the underlying facts" and whether action may need to be taken against any current NHL players:

NHL Public Relations @PR_NHL

NHL statement on lawsuit against Hockey Canada and Canadian Hockey League. <a href="https://t.co/3NGDPr87v0">pic.twitter.com/3NGDPr87v0</a>

TSN's Rick Westhead reported Thursday that the woman, who is now 24 years old, dropped her lawsuit against Hockey Canada, the CHL and the players alleged to be involved in the assault as part of a settlement.

While court records did not name the woman or the players she said assaulted her, it was noted that the defendants were CHL players in 2018 "including but not limited to members of the Canada U20 Men's Junior Hockey Team."

The woman said that during a Hockey Canada Foundation Gala in London, Ontario, on June 18, 2018, a player bought her several alcoholic beverages and shots, causing her to become separated from her friends and intoxicated.

She said that she went back to the player's hotel room and engaged in sexual acts with him before he invited seven other hockey players into the room without her knowledge of consent.

The woman said the players directed her to engage in sexual acts with them and "pressured her from leaving the room when she tried to."

The lawsuit said that the woman cried and attempted to leave the room only to be "manipulated and intimidated" into staying and that she was too intoxicated to give proper consent.

Canada won a gold medal at the 2018 World Junior Championships in Buffalo, New York, defeating Sweden in the gold medal game.

Canada's 2018 World Junior team featured several players who were high picks in the NHL draft, many of whom are starring in the NHL today.