Professional Athletes Outraged With RSL Owner’s Comments On Game Canceled In Protest
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Multiple professional athletes voiced their opinions regarding Real Salt Lake owner Dell Loy Hansen’s comments about his team’s home match that was canceled in protest.
Real Salt Lake was scheduled to host LAFC on Wednesday, August 26.
The next morning, Hansen was a guest on a Salt Lake City radio program and talked about the boycotted match.
After his comments were made public, professional athletes, including RSL legend Nick Rimando and Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell, voiced their outrage with Hansen’s remarks.
LAFC vs. RSL Canceled
Shortly before the match was scheduled to kick-off on Wednesday, both teams were united on the field in boycotting the game, like many other sporting events on Wednesday, in protest of the shooting of Jacob Blake.
“In solidarity with the players from both teams, tonight’s match has been canceled,” the club posted on Twitter after the match was canceled.
Dell Loy Hansen talks boycotted match
On Thursday, August 27, Hansen joined the “Radio From Hell” program on X96 in Salt Lake City to discuss the canceled match.
Hansen owns Broadway Media which operates the X96 station.
“Obviously, there’s a profound disappointment that the spirit that is Real was abandoned last night,” Hansen began his remarks. “We went through a profound amount of preparation during the COVID era to still be able to create our sense of community where people could be invited. Obviously we failed at a profound level.”
The Real Salt Lake owner continued by saying that RSL’s player didn’t support the local community or club by their decision not to play against LAFC.
“We’re all sitting here at an organization trying to build support and love around a team that supports the city. All I can say is they supported other issues nationally; they clearly did not support our city or our organization. That’s fairly clear,” Hansen said. “It’s a moment of sadness. It’s like somebody stabbed you and you’re trying to figure out a way to pull the knife out and move forward. That’s what it feels like. The disrespect is profound to me personally.”
Hansen closed his comments by saying that the events from August 26 took “wind out of my sails” in regards to building up the club.
“It’s taken a lot of wind out of my sails, what effort I want to put into recruiting players and building a great team,” the club owner stated. “It just seems that’s not a very good path to take.”
Pro Athletes on Hansen’s comments
Former Real Salt Lake goalkeeper and club legend Nick Rimando tweeted that he was “disgusted” by Hansen’s comments.
“Wow just wow! I can’t even right now. @realsaltlake locker room, fans, and front office that stand for equality, human rights, and the fight against racism I applaud you. I am disgusted by DLH comments,” Rimando posted. “This is more than a game.”
Utah Jazz All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell voiced support for RSL’s players in response to Hansen’s remarks.
“WOW… if it’s taken “the wind” out then sell the team… I stand with @realsaltlake players,” Mitchell tweeted.
USMNT and MLS star Jozy Altidore said following Hansen’s interview that he “needs to sell the team then.”
“He needs to sell the team then. I’m involved in a group that’s ready to purchase it,” Altirdore posted. “Time for change.”
USWNT great Megan Rapinoe called Hansen’s comments “unacceptable” and “reprehensible.”
“Louder!!!! Unacceptable and frankly reprehensible from DLH. #BlackLivesMatter,” Rapinoe tweeted.
Jazz forward Royce O’Neale echoed his support of RSL’s players.
“WOW…..stand together and fight for change @realsaltlake players,” O’Neale wrote.
Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson retweeted Mitchell and added “WOW!!”
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