Devils defenseman PK Subban gave an emotional and heartfelt news conference Sunday, speaking out after a racist on-ice taunt earlier in the weekend involving his brother.
Subban shared his personal reaction to an incident involving his brother, Jordan Subban, who is a player in the East Coast Hockey League. During a game between the Jacksonville Iceman and the South Carolina Stingrays on Saturday night, Stingrays defenseman Subban tried to pick a fight with Iceman defenseman Jacob Panetta and Subban claimed that Iceman defenseman was making him monkey gestures.
Subban shared a few posts on social media acknowledging the incident before playing in the Devils’ 3-2 loss to the Kings on Sunday. Following the loss in New Jersey, Subban shared some emotional words about the state of the game and reflected on how everyone can strive to be better. He also explained that he shared a conversation with his family, including his brothers Jordan, 26, and Malcolm, 28, who currently serves as goaltender for the Buffalo Sabers.
“I didn’t get much sleep, maybe I went to bed around 5 am and had a conversation with my family. Pure disappointment. It’s disgusting. There’s no place for that in our game. I’m embarrassed because our game is better than this one.” “What I think about is all the great people and great things in our game that I love. The unfortunate thing is not just the incident, the unfortunate thing is how many kids deal with this every day and it doesn’t come.” to the light.”
Jordan Subban fired a few shots at Panetta during the game before the Iceman earned a 1-0 win with a power play goal in overtime. Both players received major penalties and misconduct penalties that sent them to the locker room. Subban’s teammate Nico Blanchman came off the bench to hit Panetta and also received a game misconduct.
They don’t call the east coast league the jungle because my brother and the other black players are the monkeys! Hears @jacobpanetta you shouldn’t be so fast delete your twitter or your instagram account you will probably be able to play again… that tells the story but things pic.twitter.com/8zOJ9q47pk
— PK Subban (@PKSubban1) January 23, 2022
Subban also shared his account of the incident on social media in response to a tweet from Iceman about the multiple fights during overtime.
More like @JPanetta12 he was too cowardly to fight me and as soon as i started to turn my back he started making monkey faces at me so i punched him in the face several times and he flailed like the coward he is. There they fixed it ???????? https://t.co/JtPqpN9wwE
— Jordan Subban (@jordansubban) January 23, 2022
The ECHL suspended Panetta indefinitely for the incident, pending a hearing, and Iceman later announced that he would release the defender. In response to the incident and Subban’s social media posts, Pannetta shared a video recording his statement on Sunday night.
This incident occurred approximately one day after forward San Jose Barracuda Krystof Hrabik was suspended 30 games for making a racist gesture toward Boko Imama of the Tucson Roadrunners on January 12. Imana shared a few words about the frequency of these incidents in the game and re-shared Subban’s tweet describing the incident with Panetta.
Ukrainian hockey league player Jalen Smereck, who was another target of a racist gesture in 2021, also shared his thoughts on the incident with Subban this weekend.
“It’s the first month of 2022 and there have already been two racial slurs in the second and third highest leagues in North America,” Smereck said on Instagram. “Just think how many are happening at the youth level to young kids that we don’t see or never know about, because the game isn’t being recorded.”