Ahead of their game against the Columbus Blue Jackets last week, Corey Perry was dubbed a healthy scratch, and then left the team. It was announced that he would be gone for the foreseeable future, that it was an “organizational decision,” and his agent added that he stepped away for a “personal matter.” That’s when the rumor that he was shagging Connor Bedard’s mom spread like wildfire, becoming a #1 trending topic on Twitter.
Of course, after the well-publicized Kyle Beach incident that forced the Blackhawks to clean house, the current administration is doing everything it can to establish itself as a zero tolerance organization, and distance itself from that scandal.
That being said, waiting two days to address the rumors, and then not really providing any details whatsoever about what actually happened, probably isn’t going to land you back in the circle of trust.
I don’t think anyone actually thought that the rumor was true (if you did, you’re a moron), but it’s always fun to jump into meme land on social media and participate in a worldwide joke. I love the Blackhawks, I love our golden boy Connor Bedard, and I thought it was hilarious.
But nevertheless, the team didn’t help itself when they announced this morning that Corey would placed on unconditional waivers and essentially removed from the team, effective immediately.
They released the following statement ahead of the press conference:
“After an internal investigation, the Chicago Blackhawks have determined that that Corey Perry has engaged in conduct that is unacceptable, and in violation of both the terms of his Standard Player’s Contract and the Blackhawks’ internal policies intended to promote professional and safe work environments.
As such, Corey Perry has been places on unconditional waivers. In the event that Mr. Perry clears waivers, we intend to terminate his contract, effective immediately.”
BREAKING: #Blackhawks have placed Corey Perry on unconditional waivers and plan to terminate his contract, effective immediately.
Then GM Kyle Davidson spoke to the media, confirmed that the rumors are NOT true, however he didn’t really offer much else. In fact, he said that the players on the team don’t even know why Corey is gone.
He called it a “workplace matter” when asked if there were any criminal implications, but declined any details.
Here’s a brief snippet of his opening statement before he took questions from the media:
“First and foremost, I want to start off by reiterating the organization is committed to a culture of accountability and upholding our values across our employees and players both on and off the ice.
Last week, management was notified of possible misconduct by Corey Perry. We immediately pulled him from the game and conducted an internal investigation. Upon learning the findings of the investigation, we made the decision to terminate his contract. As this is an individual personal matter, I will not be able to disclose any details related to the initial reporting, investigation, or the findings.
However, I do want to be very clear on this one point: This does not involve any players or their families, and anything that suggests otherwise, or anyone that suggests otherwise, is wildly inaccurate, and frankly, it’s disgusting.”
He then answered a number of questions from the media including one about their lack of information regarding what actually happened, and how that was fueling the Bedard rumor. Which is 100% the case, even though he didn’t say it that way.
“To be honest, I think over the last 24 hours what’s gone on has been very disturbing and I feel like I’m wearing it. I’m carrying that. It’s just tough to see. It’s tough to see.”
Tell your story, control the narrative or someone will tell it for you… that’s the lesson here Kyle.
He added that they tried to conduct the investigation as quickly as possible and you have to hand it to them on that point, it’s been less than a week.