The National Hockey League has fined the Chicago Blackhawks $2 million after a bombshell report, conducted by an independent law firm and released Tuesday, found that several of the team’s executives failed to report an accusation of sexual assault by a video coach in 2010. The executives’ “inadequate procedures and mishandling” of the situation, according to the NHL, was apparently in part because they wanted the team to focus on winning that year’s Stanley Cup. Stan Bowman, the Blackhawks’ general manager and hockey operations president, stepped down on Tuesday in the wake of the findings. Al MacIsaac, Bowman’s right-hand man and director of hockey administration, also resigned.
A former minor league player, identified only as John Doe in two lawsuits filed against the team earlier this year, alleged coach Bradley Aldrich threatened him with a baseball bat to force him into nonconsensual sex. Though executives were aware of the assault, they took no action until four days after Aldrich made a sexual advance towards an intern following the team’s championship victory. Aldrich was subsequently forced out; in 2013, he pleaded guilty to sexual contact with a minor.