'Respect the Institution': NHL's Penguins Buck Anti-Trump Sports Trend
The Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins released a statement in response to President Trump's remarks toward athletes kneeling for the national anthem.
Trump was widely criticized by NFL owners and players for saying that players should be fired for disrespecting the flag.
He tweeted that the league should back the United States when it comes to respecting the anthem.
...NFL attendance and ratings are WAY DOWN. Boring games yes, but many stay away because they love our country. League should back U.S.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 24, 2017
In response, the Penguins said they will indeed go ahead with the customary White House visit.
On Saturday, Trump disinvited the NBA-champion Golden State Warriors after star guard Steph Curry said he would not make the trip.
The Penguins said that they as a team will "respect the institution of the office of the president and the long tradition of championship teams visiting the White House."
"Any agreement or disagreement with a president's politics, policies or agenda can be expressed in other ways," the Penguins said.
Elsewhere in the Steel City, the NFL's Steelers conversely declared that they would not be present on the field for the national anthem at Sunday's bout against the Chicago Bears.
Coach Mike Tomlin said his team would be instead hold a "unified" moment in their locker room.
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