On Wednesday, January 26th, 2018, Nashville Predators defenseman P.K. Subban appeared as a guest on “The Daily Show With Trevor Noah”. Noah, a comedian, producer, author, political commentator, television host and actor from South Africa, has been hosting “The Daily Show” since September 2015. He took over for Jon Stewart, who led the program from 1999 until then. The 33-year-old is known for having more liberal views, and often makes jokes about some of the crazier things said by President Donald Trump. The fact that Subban would be making a guest appearance on the show was a huge deal.
Earlier on in the season, a big topic of discussion was the National Anthem protests. Though more prominent in the NFL, and even the MLB, some NHL players were bombarded with questions. Black and Hispanic players on a variety of teams were asked a multitude of questions, including whether they would ever protest during “The Star-Spangled Banner” before a game. Back in late September, the ex-Montreal Canadien said that he would “never” take a knee during the singing of the country’s National Anthem. Head coach Peter Laviolette told reporters that the team had met as a group and collectively decided to stand during the song. He didn’t answer when asked about how he would respond to one of his players planning to protest. Subban had told ESPN in May 2017, “I never look at myself as a black player…I think of myself as a hockey player who wants to be the best hockey player in the league. I know I’m black. Everyone knows I’m black. But I don’t want to be defined as a black hockey player.” Many fans felt disappointed in the defenseman’s response to the National Anthem protests, for many reasons. By simply announcing that he would be taking part in “The Daily Show”, he was already starting to make a statement.
P.K. Subban started his segment on “The Daily Show” by telling host Trevor Noah that he was “extremely excited” to be in the All-Star Game this weekend, serving as a captain for the second year in a row. He said that he likes being able to represent the city of Nashville at the All-Star Game. Next, he talks about knowing a boy at a hospital in Montreal through his minor league team’s coach. He and the child connected and had a very close relationship, up until the child’s eventual death. This inspired him to do more work with children in the hospital during his time in Montreal. The defenseman “didn’t think twice” about donating to the hospital, and he didn’t let the trade to Nashville stop him.
Subban started a program where he gets police officers to connect with underprivileged youth by going to Predators’ games together. The 28-year-old alluded to the situation with the National Anthem protests, mentioning the team meeting and referring back to the question, “How can I make this a positive situation?” While acknowledging that everyone handles things differently, Subban said that he knew he had to try to make an impact and turn a bad situation into a good one. He said that he knows he has the opportunity to get 4 tickets to every home game throughout the year, so he donates the tickets to two kids and two police officers every game. Food is provided for the groups, and they are able to sit and watch the game and enjoy the night together. After the game, kids get to meet players, including Subban. He emphasized the fact that he is trying to get the kids to see the police officers in a better light since most of the kids in the program have only seen them in a negative way up until then.
If this segment did anything, it definitely cleared up any possible doubts about P.K. Subban as a person. By talking about his experiences with the children’s hospital in Montreal and his new program in Nashville, he showed how big his heart is and how much he truly cares about being a positive force in the world. Additionally, for anyone who thought that he didn’t have a stance towards the National Anthem protests, they were probably able to draw a conclusion about what the defenseman thinks about that from this interview. He feels passionate about the topic but doesn’t want to dwell on negativity. P.K. Subban is trying to make this world a better place, one Predators game and “The Daily Show” appearance at a time.
P.K. Subban’s televised interview (which was talked about in this article), plus exclusive online content, can be watched here!
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