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Akim Aliu Speaks

from Frank Seravalli of TSN,

Speaking publicly for the first time since he made the allegation on Twitter, the Nigerian-born Aliu said Peters made the remarks in the AHL’s Rockford Ice Hogs dressing room before a morning skate during the 2009-10 season while the 20-year-old Aliu controlled the team’s music.

“He walked in before a morning pre-game skate and said ‘Hey Akim, I’m sick of you playing that n----- s---,’ ” Aliu told TSN, with Peters, who was then the Ice Hogs head coach, referring to Aliu’s selection of hip-hop music. “He said ‘I’m sick of hearing this n-----s f------ other n-----s in the ass stuff.’ 

“He then walked out like nothing ever happened. You could hear a pin drop in the room, everything went dead silent. I just sat down in my stall, didn’t say a word.”

Two of Aliu’s Rockford teammates who were in the room at the time of the alleged incident, Simon Pepin and Peter MacArthur, independently corroborated Aliu’s account to TSN on Tuesday.

more

added 12:41pm,

 

added 1:23pm, Brad Treliving a few minutes ago, watch below.

added 2:50pm, an interesting tweet below...

 

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: akim+aliu

Comments

Ajax19's avatar

Well, that sounds like that. Bye, Bill Peters!

Posted by Ajax19 on 11/26/19 at 01:43 PM ET

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Wow, I guess that’s the end of his coaching career. What a scumbag.

Posted by George0211 on 11/26/19 at 01:44 PM ET

hockeyfreak13's avatar

Yep, that’s egregious enough where the Flames don’t even need the built-in excuse of the flames underperforming to can him.

Posted by hockeyfreak13 from Grand Rapids on 11/26/19 at 01:49 PM ET

Hootinani's avatar

Peters not on the ice this morning for practice.  Looks like the NHL is investigating, but he hasnt been officially fired yet.

Posted by Hootinani from the parade following Babs out of town on 11/26/19 at 02:25 PM ET

Avatar

Press: Babcock treated his players like shit!
Bill Peters: Hold my beer.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 11/26/19 at 02:31 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

CharDee still upset over his hero’s firing, and the word getting out what a dick he was

Sorry, CharDee wink

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 11/26/19 at 02:43 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Everyone get all their personal shots in?

Good, now lets stay on topic, please.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/26/19 at 02:47 PM ET

ilovehomers's avatar

Cya

Posted by ilovehomers on 11/26/19 at 03:03 PM ET

ilovehomers's avatar

Cya to peters! Hit send too early

Posted by ilovehomers on 11/26/19 at 03:03 PM ET

Paul's avatar

I needed that today, ilove…

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/26/19 at 03:04 PM ET

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Sure sounds credible.

This is why we wait for confirmation of the facts
- not only because due process and the presumption of innocence
(in the general sense) are core values that help protect
people from baseless smears and a mob rush to judgment,
but also because they ultimately help the credibility of a valid
accusation and secure some sort of justice for someone who has
genuinely been wronged. Hoaxes, which do happen too often, are a gift to
cynics who would deny the overall existence of a real problem.
They do the most damage to people who have actually been wronged and are seeking a fair hearing.

You’ve got to feel for a 20 year old kid, already coming from an unusual background for an NHL prospect, and then being singled out and berated with ugly demeaning language for something as innocent and universal as music. It’s hard to blame him for being sour at Peters and, even given all the uncertainties that impact any player’s career, it doesn’t help to ostracized by your boss due to the boss’s own biases and bullying.

Ten years is a long time, but it’s not ancient history. I wonder if we’re beginning to see a major cultural and generational crack develop in the ultra-deference to harsh, manipulative old-school coaches who aren’t just demanding and rigid, but cross the line into bullying and even apparently even bigotry. You’ve gotta think there have also been some gay or “suspected” gay players who no matter how hard they tried to conform were the targets of or had to hear endless ugly, bigoted language and lived in fear their dream of playing pro hockey could be sidelined if they objected in any way.

It seems contextually that Babcock and his connection to Peters and the Marner story generating understandably sympathetic press toward Marner and harsh criticism toward Babcock were linked in Aliu’s mind. Babcock intimidated a lot of people. Peters also comes off as very brusque and abrasive. Both coaches were subject to rumors of possibly being fired due to their team’s struggles. Their sudden relative weakness created an opening to challenge them based on past behavior.
I’m not criticizing Aliu for speaking up. As many have said, Peters’ apparent behavior doesn’t belong in any workplace. And the power differential between a head coach a a 20 year old prospect without a big name clout is significant.

Posted by lefty.30 on 11/26/19 at 03:20 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Daniel Carcillo tweet,

I’m getting a lot of messages and DMs from former players and parents naming their abusers

Many are current coaches in the
@NHL

@TheAHL

@CHLHockey

@HockeyCanada

We are only scratching the surface with this type of information

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/26/19 at 03:22 PM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Posted by lefty.30 on 11/26/19 at 02:20 PM ET

Sure sounds credible.
This is why we wait for confirmation of the facts

200% Agreed!

I’m unsure if I completely follow the rest though, unsure where you were going with it.  There’s no place for bigotry in sport or anyplace, but who defines bullying from being meanie weanie, or just a cold demanding coach? 

Especially in sports, in the office, there’s no requirement that I put Susan from accounting thru the glass, but I gotta tell you in the film room, if old Murray pushed a puck to avoid a hit, its called out, it has to be. 

I’m sure we can all name a dozen or so adult figures minimum in our lives, dad, relatives, coaches, bosses, that we would have classified as absolute toolboxes or unfair, or “out to get us”  at a point in time, but in hindsight, now that we’re old crotchety people, most ever really crossed a line, and most made us a better person as they expected and demanded more out of us

I saw it in my sons eyes when he needed a warm shoe plant, I can’t tell you how many grown up ex-players that I run into that laugh about old coach giving them a tirade, after greeting me warmly with a handshake.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from YzerHolland2.0's pixie dust fueled bandwagon on 11/26/19 at 05:13 PM ET

Chet's avatar

sure, but that’s different from an N bomb or physical abuse.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 11/26/19 at 05:19 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Jenna West of Sports Illustrated,

Former Hurricanes defenseman Michal Jordán accused Flames coach Bill Peters of physical abuse on Tuesday.

In a series of tweets, Jordán said Peters kicked him and punched an unnamed player in the head during a game.

“After years making it to the NHL had experience with the worst coach ever by far [sic]. Kicking me and punching [another] player to the head during the game…then pretending like nothing happened,” Jordán wrote.

continued

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/26/19 at 05:21 PM ET

Avatar

Yeah, I see the difference, too, and don’t mean to say
that old-school coaches step over the line just for being tough,
demanding, and/or less than sweet and friendly to their players.

What I’m wondering is, since we’re in this different era of social media
instant publicity and connectivity (for better and for worse) and we’re also seeing a different generation with different expectations, whether the model of tough SOB coach you love to hate but who can also push players to be better and teams to win,
will no longer be tenable in general. If the players will be in charge in a different way and will feel freer to speak up - about legit abusive behavior, but also to make more public criticisms and demands. We saw it a little bit with Toronto. No matter how big Babcock’s contract or how long his term, he was coaching players making twice as much on contracts twice as long. But it seems like the overall players’ expectations are different and they have different tools to express themselves.

I think we all want bigotry and abuse to be called out and held accountable.
That’s all good.

But I wonder if we’re seeing the start of a bigger cultural shift in relations between coaches and players that will only accelerate.

Posted by lefty.30 on 11/26/19 at 05:32 PM ET

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Often left you need some outrage to encourage an investigation especially when racism is involved.  Often if people dont make a stink, its swept under the rug.


So NOW can we talk about the culture that led Peter’s to believe he could walk into a locker room of a pro sports team and do this?

Posted by ThatGuy on 11/26/19 at 06:11 PM ET

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Lefty I usually enjoy all of your posts but I have no clue how were going from a guy throwing around the worst of racial slurs even be in any way refocused into just trying to make him a tough SOB?

I’ve been choked out by a drill Sargent.  Put to sleep to prove a point.  I was never disrespected.  Real leaders know the difference and always come from a place of wanting you to succeed.

And food for thought, the new Speciql Operations commander sent a memo out about all this rank and file, keep it behind closed doors stuff has tarnished the seals and put responsibility on all commanding officers to address and report all conduct unbecoming.  So no, I dont think calling out BS is going to affect coaches ability to make tough SOBs

Posted by ThatGuy on 11/26/19 at 06:17 PM ET

Chet's avatar

not to mention, it’s not proven that being an SOB gets better results. that alone is dated thinking.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 11/26/19 at 06:43 PM ET

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Yeah, I don’t mean to conflate the two - bigotry versus simply being
a really grinding abrasive SOB.

My point was more to wonder how these positive trends that are
helping to shine some light and hopefully disinfect where elements
of the culture are backwards, bigoted, and diseased, might also combine with the changing expectations in general of a younger generation who is steeped in the technology to share and connect and who expects to speak out more at a younger age and is less tolerant overall of silently deferring to dictatorial authority figures like coaches.

It sounds like Peters was highly abusive and disrespectful in Carolina, too.

The coach has got the power to make or break your career before it gets off the ground. The culture was for rookies especially to take it and never complain. The pressure not to say anything must have been enormous. You risk getting immediately frozen out by your teammates; getting a rep around the league as a problem; and the coach can bury you and lobby to have you demoted and give you a bad name. And this is the game you love and career you dreamed of and scarified for.

In other words, who in that (especially AHL) environment is going to make a big stink out of it. The captain going to the coach to object is not enough maybe, but it’s pretty admirable in that context. Peters could single out one guy, as bullies do, and assume no one would dare to risk the consequences of to his career and dream and belonging with the group, by pushing back openly. Michal Jordan says he *and his agent* kept Peters’ physical abuse secret, though others saw it and even experience it too, because being seen as defying the coach is a reputation and career killer.
When you’ve got character flaws as serious as tendencies toward bigotry and physical abuse, great power corrupts and enables.

Posted by lefty.30 on 11/26/19 at 06:44 PM ET

Chet's avatar

hard to believe this reputation didn’t get around to the people who kept hiring him. very hard to believe.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 11/26/19 at 07:11 PM ET

Paul's avatar

per a report, the Canes new.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/26/19 at 07:13 PM ET

Chet's avatar

Indeed:

https://twitter.com/armstrongabc11/status/1199456687150776320?s=21

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 11/26/19 at 07:17 PM ET

Paul's avatar

So the next question, did the Wings know?

Peters was hired as an assistant after the reported incident in Rockford.

Someone wake up the diggers.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/26/19 at 07:22 PM ET

Chet's avatar

Somehow I don’t think Helene is digging too deeply on this one. You’d have to ask holland. These guys will circle the wagons and deny.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 11/26/19 at 08:35 PM ET

WingedRider's avatar

@JonathanWillis   See twitter for more info on Aliu (Sorry Laptop is missing some keyboard functions) Painful

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 11/26/19 at 09:18 PM ET

Kate from PA now in SC-made in Detroit's avatar

Someone wake up the diggers.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 11/26/19 at 06:22 PM ET

Wasn’t he in Detroit for 3 seasons? Someone had to have heard something…... Just sayin….

Posted by Kate from PA now in SC-made in Detroit on 11/26/19 at 09:30 PM ET

damndog revenge   From the bowels of Detroit's avatar

Strange this comes up.ten years later. Racism in any form is cowardly ignorance. I would hope Peters has learned and evolved since then. None of us are the same person we were ten years ago, life changes you with the ups and downs ithands you.

I am not saying a statue of limitations should be heeded here but I do think there should be an investigation to see if this has been a pattern since and before any judgement be brought forth.

And to all the righteous ones I would look in the mirror before casting any stones.

Posted by damndog revenge From the bowels of Detroit on 11/26/19 at 09:41 PM ET

Avatar

It is always a good idea to proceed with a healthy
dose of humility.

I even tried to imagine Peters as basically a dictatorial
coach who wasn’t used to ever having to think twice about what came
out of his mouth and who just was out of it culturally to the point he
reacted to lyrics he genuinely found uncomfortable by (stupidly, ignorantly) using the same word to characterize and dismiss the music.

Yeah, pretty big stretch I know. This was 2009, not 1959.
And I find it hard to believe Peters was highly sensitive given the coarse language
one could expect in a hockey locker room.

But the thread that runs through these (at least) two well-corroborated actions by
Peters is bullying and abuse. He singled out the guy - just a kid, really - who was from a different background and skin color and who must have already felt like he stood out, and repeatedly used language to berate him that everyone knows - and knew then - is as demeaning and dehumanizing as you can get. If hip-hop has reclaimed a horrific word to turn it on its head and take control of it, Peters was essentially claiming it back as a means of singling out and bullying a young man for his skin color, for how he was born, knowing he had the power in that context to get away with it.

What he did in Carolina was also obviously abusive.
The commonality is singled out and humiliating players he has powe over in front of their teammates, knowing he largely holds their careers and reps in his hands.

Maybe he said other repugnant, racist things to other players and maybe he hit other players, but those two cases, Rockford and Carolina, are enough to know there has been a pattern of grossly unacceptable behavior.

Posted by lefty.30 on 11/26/19 at 10:20 PM ET

Chet's avatar

No grown a*s man gets a pass for using that slur in a locker room, directed at a 20-yo in his charge, in the year 2009. That’s *#$%@& ridiculous.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 11/26/19 at 11:20 PM ET

Avatar

Babs was obviously okay with Peters, and he has demonstrated seriously bad judgement himself. I think we’re. Not done hearing his stories.

Posted by pnwwing on 11/27/19 at 12:46 AM ET

WingedRider's avatar

Seems like a lot more are coming out.  Some coaching jobs coming open? Tough spot for owners, depends I guess on the team.  Will sit back and watch.

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 11/27/19 at 02:09 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

not to mention, it’s not proven that being an SOB gets better results. that alone is dated thinking.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 11/26/19 at 05:43 PM ET

Coaches like Scotty Bowman and Bill Belichick would agree to disagree with you there.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from YzerHolland2.0's pixie dust fueled bandwagon on 11/27/19 at 10:04 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Wasn’t he in Detroit for 3 seasons? Someone had to have heard something…... Just sayin….
Posted by Kate from PA now in SC-made in Detroit on 11/26/19 at 08:30 PM ET

You’d have to think this was a rather isolated incident, 10 years ago was not the 40’s, if the guy went around tossing racial slurs you’d think it would have come up before that, or its entire possible that he didn’t coach minorities, and since coaching is almost a 12 hour a day commitment, the “opportunity” so to speak to show his true colors didn’t materialize often?

You’d like to think that good people out there would call this vile stuff out, but Joe Paterno also coached with Sandusky for how many years, and while racial slurs are vile there are things worse

 

Posted by MurrayChadwick from YzerHolland2.0's pixie dust fueled bandwagon on 11/27/19 at 10:25 AM ET

WingedRider's avatar

The Minor leagues is were this is common and difficult to deal with.  Most Jerks volunteer to be coaches, treasurers , etc on a team (their kid moves up), they get jerk friends to vote them into the Hockey association board (more power), young refs are scared to death of these goon coaches with no brains and favor the coaches just to stay alive. Police arrived to escort Referee off the ice by our coach who was thrown out for Vulgar yelling at the Ref. Rule was the coach was to leave the Rink, didn’t want to. Some pay big $$ to get their kids into a private a Hockey Association(North Shore Winter Club, Burnaby), lots of creative ways to get a kid with no skills moved up.  Violence is common, my son a goalie, had the Coach grab his Goalie Mask by the wires and shake the shit out of his head, called 911, Coach then threatened me, called 911.  Nothing happened but the violence continued but more subtle. That is why a lot of young kids quit hockey and go to soccer , School sports, etc.

My point is these clowns try to move up to WHL and take there antics with them and a few make the pros.  The seed of being a violent coach is planted early.  Many coaches in Saskatoon try to emulate Babcock, lovely.  This has been a problem for a long time at all levels of Hockey. New Westminster Bruins of the WHL, long ago, had every team in the WHL, turteling for fear of getting beat to death. The Bruins finished 1st.

It is sick from top to bottom!!!

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 12/01/19 at 07:36 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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