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'It's toxic': Carcillo's Former NHLer says it won't be silent about hockey's hazing culture



It's been more than 15 years since Daniel Carcillo moved away from home in pursuit of his goal of becoming a professional hockey player.

He's tried his best not to think about him during his time as a member of the Sarnia Sting.

"One of the most vivid memories that stands out is that I am being taped to a table ass-up by two veterans. He was screaming," Carcillo told CBC.

Watch Carcillo explain the loneliness of abuse:

The two-time Stanley Cup champion discusses the hazing incident remembers most vividly when he says one of his OH coaches the part shop in whipping a teammate with a belt. 0:51

He said one of the coaches heard the screams and came out of his office. He said the coach had a down token player slap.

"It was more than a joking participation, but to me – sitting in a stall watching this – it was told that I had to turn to, to tell these guys what we were going through, "Carcillo said.

Watch Carcillo speaks out about alleged abuse:

Daniel Carcillo talks about some of the alleged abuse he experienced as a member of the Sarnia Sting. 1:29

'Some guys would get it harder than others'

The recent high-profile carcillo to speak up about his own oralal.

"It's amazing how you can experience emotional trauma and not even think about it," Carcillo said.

"And then something as simple as reading and writing about everything else's abuse can be all the emotions and imagery and just so it's vivid – you're right back in it," Carcillo said. during the 2002-03 Ontario Hockey League season.

"I was moved away from home at 17 to chase my dream of making it to the NHL and making something of myself. And what myself and 11 of us had to end that year was daily abuse," Carcillo recalls.

He said rookie players were often made to pull their pants down and subject themselves to beating with a jagged goalie stick.

"Some guys would get it harder than others because they were misunderstood or some of the guys thought we were a little bit weird and we didn't fit that mold of a typical masculine hockey player," Carcillo said.

And that wasn't the worst of it. He recalls being stuffed into a bus washroom with six teammates.

"Forty-five minutes and being naked in a hot box having their tobacco spreading through a vent. That's my breaking point," Carcillo remembers.

Carcillo said coaches and management were often aware of events and events on occasion – like the incident with the tied-down player.

'Time is right'

Carcillo eventually went over the management team and took his concerns to OHL commissioner David Branch. Carcillo credits Branch with taking steps to mitigate his situation.

In a statement to CBC, I have said that I have zero tolerance for hazing and have been implementing preventive hazing or bullying for several years. It is said that people are forwarding without fear of reprisal. Each team has an independent chaplain who can hear confidential concerns or complaints.

Carcillo said there is a lot more work to be done and thinks the time is right.

OHL's after his time in, Daniel Carcillo won the Stanley Cup in 2013 and 2015 with Chicago. (Jonathan Daniel / Getty Images)

Jay Johnson is a professor at the University of Manitoba and has studied hazing in sports extensively.

"When these stories first came out, I said a few times that I thought this might be of the level of the hashtag me too movement." Johnson said. "That one kind of horrific story comes forward and it empowers other people to come forward with their horrific stories. The time seems right that we can come forward with these stories and maybe some prompt actions."

At the same time, Johnson said Carcillo and others pushing for change face significant obstacles.

Management usually also part of the culture

"Coaches and athletic directors, general managers are generally former athletes themselves, right? So they're also part of that culture. And terms of hazing, have it done to them and did it to others," Johnson points out.

"And that really normalizes behavior, because everyone's doing it. So the biggest resistance I would have been someone like that saw today with And kind of coming out and saying hey, I had it done to me and it was one of the worst things and almost ended my career. "

Ex-teammate Ryan Munce echoes Carcillo's statements:

In an exclusive interview to CBC News, former Sarnia Sting goaltender Ryan Munce details the abuse he suffered while playing junior hockey. 3:11

Carcillo wants to give victims a voice, a conduit to tell their stories.

Despite what he went through, he emerged from his time in Sarnia and on the NHL career that included two Stanley Cups with the Chicago Blackhawks.

Still, those years in Sarnia linger.

"Look back to the roster and look at the guys who were on those teams in Sarnia and look at how to deal with addiction issues, relationship issues," Carcillo said.

"It was supposed to be the best year of my life and the culmination of my dreams and all my hard work," Carcillo recalls.

"Instead, we have endured that abuse, that is daily abuse, and it was something that I thought was normal … because I was being abused by that next year I was able to do it to the rookies, to the next class coming in. I remember thinking as they were hitting me in my head that I could never physically bring myself to do this to somebody, it's too painful. "


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