Sport

Why USA goalies may have to remove Statue of Liberty images

Why USA goalies may have to remove Statue of Liberty images

American goaltenders Nicole Hensley and Alex Rigsby wore the Statue of Liberty on each of their helmets, uncovered and untouched before their game with the team from Russia Wednesday. Their goalkeepers' masks are adorned in red, white and blue paint, with images of the Statue of Liberty emblazoned across them. Maddie Rooney, who started in the USA's first game of the PyeongChang Games, does not have a Statue of Liberty on her mask.

The IOC reportedly threatened the USA women's hockey team with a ban of the patriotic image during the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. The rule from the IOC Guidelines Regarding Authorized Identifications: No item may feature the wording or lyrics from national anthems, motivational words, public/political messaging or slogans related to national identity.

The IOC released a statement Tuesday, claiming the initial helmet story was a "misunderstanding".

USA Hockey spokesman Dave Fischer said that "discussions are ongoing" after International Olympic Committee officials earlier indicated that the images would have to be removed.

"Masks are approved", USA Hockey spokeswoman Andrea Mazzarelli said in an email.




Hensley, who helped the United States women capture the past two world championships, has a large Statue of Liberty image painted on the left side of her mask.

Rigsby has one on the chin of her mask.

Maddie Rooney started Sunday's opener against Finland, which the US won 3-1.

"I have no doubt we're ready", said Hensley, who made 13 saves in her Olympic debut. On the ice, four-time defending champion Canada stretched their Olympic women's hockey win streak to 22 games by thumping Finland 4-1.

The American team played its second game of the Olympic tournament on Tuesday night, and officials with USA Hockey were sorting out whether the team's goaltenders would have to take the ice with an alternate design when it faces the Olympic Athletes from Russian Federation.


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