When the Florida Panthers defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday, ESPN anchor P.K. Subban dropped a comment in reference to singer-songwriter Lizzo and her body.
The 13-season NHL veteran, who now works as an NHL broadcast analyst for ESPN, was widely criticized across social media after his segment with co-anchor John Buccigross. Following the Maple Leafs’ loss, Buccigross suggested the team “pack a lunch” to cope with their defeat. However, Subban proceeded to chime in with the sentiment, “Maybe they need to pack a Lizzo-sized lunch.”
Since making the on-air comment, some hockey fans are calling the analyst fatphobic for his removal from ESPN. One Twitter user wrote, “I’ve been a PK fan and supporter from day one – but his recent comments on Pride and now this? I don’t see him the same way anymore. This is not okay.”
In a similar fashion, another NHL fan tweeted, “Just want to watch hockey without some panelists making a dig at women. First, it was biz saying women only watch hockey for the men & now PK Subban saying a Lizzo-size lunch. Ugh.”
In the tweet, the user referenced the controversial statement made on TNT by Paul Bissonnette last year. In October, Bissonnette that the reason why viewership for hockey is high among women is “because the players are attractive.”
Reflecting on P.K. Subban’s retirement from the NHL
Subban joined the cast of ESPN hockey analysts following his retirement from the sport last year. Although some fans believe he is doing a poor job at his current job, it is unlikely he would return to the ice after his retirement announcement.
“The end of this chapter is closing and after 13 years in the NHL, I have made the decision to retire,” he wrote in a statement issued on Twitter.
“I never looked at myself or ever felt I was ‘just a hockey player. I always looked at myself as a person who happened to play hockey,” he continued. “Having that perspective allowed me to enjoy every shift like it was my last, celebrate every goal with emotion, and play every game as if someone paid to watch me play who had never seen me play before.”
Subban included, “To an amazing league that gave me the opportunity to compete at the highest level with some of the best athletes in the world.”
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