Hockey coach’s speech goes viral after telling player to stand for National Anthem

A local hockey coach's speech to players is going viral. His message is to stand up for the National Anthem or you won't play.

Danbury, CT (WFSB) — A hockey coach’s speech to players is going viral.

His message is to stand up for the National Anthem or you won’t play.

There has been a lot of talk about patriotism lately. Last week, Nike pulled sneakers featuring the Betsy Ross flag after some felt it was offensive.

The U.S. Women’s Soccer Team made headlines after captain, Megan Rapinoe, refused to sing the National Anthem during the World Cup.

Now, in Danbury, a minor league pro-hockey coach recently told his players to stand for the National Anthem or else.

“We are not women’s soccer. We are not the NFL. If there is anyone here who is going to be disrespectful to either the American or Canadian National Anthem, grab your gear and get the [expletive] out now because you will never see the ice in this arena,” John Krupinski said to his players.

The video of John Krupinski quickly went viral with more than 150,000 views.

On Thursday, Channel 3 spoke exclusively to Krupinski, the coach of the Danbury Hat Tricks, about his speech to the players.

“I don’t think it’s too much to ask anyone to stand up and show a little big of respect for two minutes. You’re free to do whatever you want to do before and afterwards,” Krupinski told Channel 3.

While the majority of people online praised Krupinski’s comments, there were some who disagreed with the hard and fast rule.

“Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but you put on my jersey and step on my ice and you’re going to act in an appropriate manner. If people don’t like that, I’m not going to apologize,” Krupinski said.

Krupinski went on to say he has no problem with his players protesting, but they must stand for the National Anthem.

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