Barstool clashes with NWHL after Dave Portnoy says considered one of his black gamers must be ‘in jail’ for calling the positioning an ‘overtly racist platform’

  • After Barstool CEO Erika Nardini greeted two NWHL gamers on her podcast, league followers and journalists berated the model for its historical past of misogyny and racism, and Nardini responded with a controversial video.
  • Riveters rookie Saroya Tinker – one of many solely black gamers within the NWHL – tweeted on Monday that the league shouldn’t settle for assist from a platform that “promotes white supremacy”.
  • Dave Portnoy of Barstool then mentioned Tinker “must be in jail for this” – prompting his followers to harass the 22-year-old – earlier than he and Nardini lamented the “strain for compliance” on “The Megyn Kelly Present” .
  • Visit the Insider homepage for more stories.

The Nationwide Girls’s Hockey League and the barstool combat.

The CEO of the sports activities media firm – Erika Nardini – is keen about hockey. However when she used Barstool’s large platform to assist entice new eyes to the league – which is simply days away from its 2021 season – some followers and reporters dismissed the model’s controversial involvement within the league.


An NWHL sport between Boston Satisfaction and the Buffalo Beauts.

Andy Marlin / Getty Photos for NWHL

The battle ensued, with journalistic calls, squabbles between groups and notorious Barstool co-founder Dave Portnoy inciting on-line harassment of a 22-year-old black recruit.

That is the way it all occurred

Within the run-up to NWHL groups heading to a bubble in Lake Placid, New York, to compete for the 2021 Isobel Cup, Nardini welcomed two gamers – Kelly Babstock and Rebecca Russo of the Metropolitan Riveters – on his “Token CEO” podcast . Followers and reporters masking the league have been fast to boost issues about Barstool – which has a well-documented historical past of misogynist, racist, and antagonist conduct. Open these hyperlinks at your personal discretion.

Erika Nardini

Erika Nardini, CEO of Barstool Sports activities.

Kevin Hagen / Hashtag Sports activities through AP Photos

Nardini felt compelled to face up for herself and did so by way of a video posted on Monday. Because the critics’ tweets flashed throughout the display, the 45-year-old puzzled, “why my efforts [to promote the NWHL] is a foul factor. “

“I additionally suppose it is fascinating to see a number of the individuals in girls’s hockey that I’ve had good conversations with occurring Twitter and pretending none of that occurred,” she added.

However as an alternative of clearing the air, the clip sparked much more controversy, particularly given the Barstool group’s propensity to harass naysayers. It was then that Saroya Tinker – a Riveters rookie and one of many solely black gamers within the NWHL – broke her silence.

saroya tinkering

Saroya Tinker.

Vaughn Ridley / Getty Photos

The winner of the four-year letter with the Yale Bulldogs posted a shocking rebuke from Barstool on Twitter, writing that “WE, as a league, don’t want the assist of any overtly racist platform.” She went on to say that the platform “promotes white supremacy” and “solely additional divides the sports activities group”.

“Please maintain your cash,” Tinker added.

And the subsequent day, NWHL Commissioner Tyler Tumminia stepped in, stressing that her prime precedence is “to strengthen the values ​​of the NWHL and its gamers” and to allow the league to “stay inclusive and empowering for ladies. “. Then, with out straight naming Nardini or Barstool, Tumminia condemned the act of exposing “many journalists, employees and followers who’ve given a lot to girls’s hockey.”

“Particularly figuring out that these individuals could possibly be focused or harassed on social networks,” she added.

That is exactly what occurred.

Portnoy intervened following the NWHL assertion

The Barstool chief launched his personal video to his almost two million Twitter followers on Tuesday night, titled “Emergency Press Convention – NWHL owes Erika Nardini an Apology.”

Whereas wanting straight on the digital camera, Portnoy – often known as “El Presidente” by his loyal fan base – defined why he thinks his enterprise is not sexist. Then the 44-year-old Barstool face spoke out in opposition to “the political local weather” and Tinker for suggesting the model was aligned with white supremacy.

“You need to be in jail for that,” Portnoy mentioned. “To name an organization a white supremacist with none proof …”

“F — you individuals,” he added of Nardini’s criticisms.

Dave Portnoy bar stool

Dave Portnoy.

Getty Photos / Cliff Hawkins

Unsurprisingly, “Stoolies” got here out en masse to harass Tinker in addition to reporters and followers who criticized Nardini. A type of followers replied to Nardini’s video on Twitter and mentioned she had skilled “extra vitriol, hatred, misogyny and transphobia in my [direct messages] and solutions in the previous few days due to Barstool ppl which I’ve by no means had earlier than on this app. “

“If you happen to care about girls, you’ll want to take an extended and cautious take a look at the tradition you helped create,” she added.

The tradition she helped create

Within the 18 years since its founding, Barstool has not developed a popularity as an ally of girls’s sports activities leagues and the athletes that make them up. The model has conspicuously accomplished the other, branding itself as a “By the Widespread Man, For The Widespread Man” website from the very starting. Its slogan “Saturdays are for boys” is: according to the New York Post, a “motion that’s … bent on arguing that males are shameless males” – presumably to the exclusion of their feminine counterparts.



Sam Greenwood / Getty Photos

Portnoy as a person and Barstool as a collective have used the objectification of girls as a method of constructing a reputation for themselves. “Sluts” and “chicks” have lengthy been part of the Barstool vernacular, with photographs of almost bare girls – or “smoking rooms” – littering the corporate’s web site and social media accounts.

In response to The daily beast, considered one of Barstool’s blogs “assesses the sexual attractiveness of feminine academics who allegedly assaulted underage male college students.” Another has readers trying to “Guess That Ass” and “Guess That Rack.” And the corporate prolonged contracts to job candidates that prohibited them from opposing or taking offense to “nudity, sexual eventualities, racial epithets, suggestive gestures, profanity and references to stereotypes” at Barstool, by The Boston Globe.

Portnoy himself make clear sexual harassment in the workplace, joked about rape, and stood idly by as colleagues objective teenage girls. And he made enjoyable of numerous girls’s appearances within the media, together with women in his organization.

Dave portnoy

Dave Portnoy.

Tom Briglia / Getty Photos

He has an analogous background in racist, anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, homophobic, and transphobic transgressions. He laughs on the Jews, assimilated Colin Kaepernick to a terrorist as a result of “I assumed possibly he had a terrorist, Arab, Arab theology. Possibly he was on the Palestine aspect or one thing like that.” He was filmed utilizing the N phrase and has since overseen Barstool’s launch of a podcast with the insult in its title – “R” arduous and all – prompting some black staff of the corporate to stop on the spot.

However somewhat than apologize, Portnoy, Nardini and the barstool machine denounced the tradition of cancellation and “public strain for compliance.”

“It is courageous proper now to be real,” Nardini mentioned on “The Megyn Kelly Show” Wednesday morning. “It is courageous to have a narrative. It is courageous to say what you imply publicly. Joking now’s courageous. You speak to any artist, you speak to any comic, you speak to any public determine … there may be such strain for conformity and such strain for unanimous opinion. “

Struggling for inclusiveness isn’t a ‘push for conformity’ – it’s a name for primary decency

As a result of inclusiveness isn’t now, and by no means has been, a part of Barstool’s philosophy, Nardini’s try and equate respect for all individuals – no matter race, gender, and creed – with a “Strain for compliance” has grim implications. Below the guise of “authenticity”, Portnoy and lots of of his colleagues perpetuate disparities inside every sociological class, one “joke” at a time.


Blake Bolden, the primary black participant within the NWHL, visits the Black Hockey Historical past Museum.

Juan Ocampo / NHLI through Getty Photos

So, whereas Nardini’s assist for the NWHL could properly have been real, it’s inconceivable to separate his intentions from his technique of execution; the corporate she runs has a really lengthy and really disturbing expertise in utilizing her platform to keep away from and demean the very individuals she is now looking for to assist.

Since Nardini is in retreat with a number of the league’s important supporters – and, apparently, her management – she and Portnoy have teased the creation of their very own girls’s hockey league. And, after all, some skilled hockey gamers could also be intrigued by this prospect. However a girls’s league that neither actively welcomes nor helps all girls – black girls, girls of shade, queer girls, Muslim girls, and Jewish girls included – should not a girls’s league in any respect.

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