by WorldTribune Staff, December 12, 2022
A frightening injury at the NHL-sponsored All-Trans Draft Tournament in which a team of mostly biological males played against a team of mostly biological females has gone widely unreported.
The championship game of the hockey tournament featured Team Pink vs. Team Black. As Jonathan Kay reported for Quillette, Team Pink featured biological males with a significant size advantage over the Team Black squad of females.
“Team Black player #91, a self-described FTM (female-to-male transgender) player who was pushed to the ice by a much larger she/her member of Team Pink — #90, who self-describes publicly as ‘a bisexual trans woman’ — with three minutes left in the first period. The contact doesn’t look particularly serious when you watch it on video. It may even have been entirely accidental. But the size imbalance between the two skaters was so great that the Team Black player ended up being propelled head first into the boards with enough force to deliver a concussion,” Kay reported.
It took more than 17 minutes for the head-injured player to be placed on a stretcher and taken off the ice.
Team Pink won the game in a 7–1 rout.
“According to one rink-side source who attended the tournament, Team Pink players even called a meeting during the second period in order to discuss whether it would be best to end the game prematurely,” Kay noted. “Two players floated the idea of simply announcing that the tournament was over and that ‘everyone’ had won.”
“There [was] just an enormous difference in size between the two teams — height, weight, shoulder width, muscles — the differences were plain to even a child,” is how one rink-side observer described the finals to Kay.
Kay continued: “On video, a quartet of large Team Pink players stood out: #1, #9, #42, and #90. Each of these she/her biological men—at least one of whom played Division I college hockey on a men’s team before transitioning — appeared head and shoulders taller than most of Team Black (whose 12-player roster contained only two she/hers). And this group didn’t even include #29, a speedy Team Pink she/her, and self-described male-to-female trans woman, who consistently skated circles around the opposition, and who ended up netting two hat tricks in the space of four games during the tournament.
“It was simply a case of larger, biologically male players using their size and speed to grab loose pucks, break up opposing rushes, and control the area around the nets. But even in the absence of ill intent, their size advantage produced a heightened level of risk for the biological women.”
One rink-side source told Kay: “I don’t know how the teams were made. But any [fan] could see that this couldn’t possibly be fair, and that someone could get hurt — and someone did.”
The Team Black player knocked into the boards has recovered. In a recent social media post, #91 reported, “I am okay, [though] I was diagnosed with a concussion and muscle strains in my left neck, shoulder, and back.”
But, given what happened in the final game of the All-Trans Draft Tournament, “it’s also important to note that competitive hockey presents a significant concussion risk; and that women are physiologically more vulnerable to such injuries due to (as one research team concluded) having ‘significantly less isometric strength (49%), neck girth (30%), and head mass (43%), resulting in lower levels of head-neck segment stiffness (29%),’ ” Kay wrote.
According to a Canadian hockey parent whose AAA-level teenage daughter occasionally competes against boys’ teams:
“The different contact rules and vulnerability to injury are the reasons why there is usually a mass exodus of girls from elite boys hockey at the Bantam level [typically ages 13 to 14], which corresponds to a flood of testosterone in adolescent males. Girls who stay in boys hockey subject themselves to a dramatically higher risk—concussions and broken collar bones being the most frequent … Only goalies — playing a non-contact position relying almost entirely on intelligence and skill—can safely remain [playing with boys], but few do. Most parents of girls switching from boys to girls hockey will report the same thing: Their daughter kept up, maybe even dominated, on tactics and skill, but could not match the strength, physicality, and often dangerous aggression of boys after puberty.”