Don Cherry on Women in NHL Locker Rooms

mclean[Note: So nobody misunderstands my intentions, it is best if most of this is read in a sarcastic Stephen Colbert-type voice]

Anyone ever wonder what Don Cherry thinks of female reporters in NHL dressing rooms? Well, now that he’s announced it in all his glory on Coach’s Corner tonight, everyone knows. And for him and the CBC, that’s probably not a good thing. It all started when Cherry felt the need to chime in on Duncan Keith’s slightly sexist remarks earlier in the week when a female reporter interviewed him. Cherry basically said Keith’s quote was a non-issue. Which I actually agree with a bit. I’ve heard the interview a few times and I’m not convinced he meant any harm.

This led to the point Cherry really wanted to make, which was, “…and I really believe this, I don’t believe women should be in the male dressing room.” The look on Ron MacLean’s face (top right) really says it all. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, Cherry followed it up with, “I don’t feel women are equal; I feel they are on a pedestal and they should not be walking in when naked guys are walking in.” Here is the entire video:

Cherry went to one of the oldest white male tricks in the book, that white men are in fact the ones discriminated against. And why wouldn’t he considering how well it’s worked for those who claim black people have better rights than white people? Surely this last line from Cherry is the one that really took it over the top.

As is usual with Cherry, it isn’t hard to find him expressing a similar opinion from 20 years ago. Back in the good ‘ole days when women weren’t allowed in locker rooms for fear they might look at penises and get excited, they were still causing problems at NHL hockey games. Yes I know, hard to believe, but women have caused problems at hockey games ever since they were first allowed in the arenas. Here is the old video (notice MacLean’s similar reaction at 0:23):

I think CBC should suspend him, but likely they will just ask him to apologize next time he is on-air Tuesday or Wednesday. And this certainly isn’t the first time Cherry has stirred up controversy around the start of the playoffs. See this post from April 18, 2011 when he laughed off the problem of concussions.

Remember this kind of thing is what got Richard Keys and Andy Gray fired at Sky Sports. And they didn’t knowingly say it on-air. Cherry did. Other than that I don’t know what to say. The videos really speak for themselves.

8 thoughts on “Don Cherry on Women in NHL Locker Rooms

  1. I half agree with Cherry here. There is a double standard when it comes to the opposite sex in the dressing room, and that will never change. Men will NEVER be allowed in a women’s dressing room the way women are in men’s dressing rooms. If a male reporter was in there when a women was naked, the world would be in an uproar. The only solution would be to ban all reporters from the dressing room and have a media scrum outside. I personally don’t have a problem with men or women in either dressing room, but I am a male.

    I also don’t think he should be suspended, because he’s just telling the truth. He gets payed to tell his mind, and that’s all he did. People are gonna call him sexist, but I don’t think that’s the case at all here.

    • Problem is women aren’t in women’s dressing rooms when female athletes are naked either. And as I understand it, its not like any reporters are standing right next to the showers. Most athletes have something on, at least a towel, but the time they make it to where the press is.

    • I agree with you! Many people like Cherry as he speakers his mind and doesn’t mince words…That’s why he has such a strong following. As a father of 2 girls who are active in sports, I don’t think it’s right to have men in women’s change room and women’s in men’s change room….same applies to bathrooms. I think most people would agree….Cherry has every right to object. Have we no boundaries?

      • I did work for a high level womens hockey team and yes i am male there was strict rules on when we could be in the locker room the rules were even stricter for reporters.

      • It’s not like they’re in the showers or something. They’re in the locker rooms where the players are usually wearing some clothes, if not fully dressed. Cherry pissed off female reporters by saying what he did.

  2. Male reporters are allowed in WNBA locker rooms just like females are allowed in NBA ones. Since both leagues are linked they have the same media access rules. Been like that for years. Last I checked there hasn’t been protests from women about guys in their locker room.

    NCAA basketball playoffs the exact same way for men and women. At a certain time the rooms are opened and reporters are allowed in to do interviews. So players always know when the reporters are coming in. Same set of rules. No double standard for female players.

    Idea that reporters just walk in to do interviews whenever they feel like it is silly. If a player is walking around a locker room naked at that point they’re fully aware the media is there.

  3. The CBC will never rid themselves of Cherry for the same reason the NHL will never get rid of fighting. While it may help them in the view of the casual fan and mainstream audiences, it will turn away the highly influential niche market which worship at the feet of both institutions (and do so with open wallets).

  4. Do people think that NHL (or any pro sport) locker rooms are like the ones at the YMCA? They’re not: the showers are not there and players have ample space to put clothing on away from the media (or just hide from them). The only players who walk around without clothing are ones who either don’t care or want to make people uncomfortable

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