Blackhawks Ask Hockey Hall of Fame to 'X' Out Assistant Coach's Name from Stanley Cup

Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz asked the Hockey Hall of Fame to "X" out the name of an assistant coach that was engraved on the Stanley Cup, the Associated Press reported.

The assistant coach, Brad Aldrich, was accused of sexually assaulting a player during the NHL team's 2010 championship run.

Wirtz wrote in a letter to Hall of Fame Chairman Lanny McDonald that Aldrich's alleged actions should exclude him from inclusion on the Cup.

"I am humbly requesting that the Hockey Hall of Fame consider 'x-ing' out his name on the Stanley Cup," Wirtz wrote. "While nothing can undo what he did, leaving his name on the most prestigious trophy in sports seems profoundly wrong."

While an engraved name can't be removed from the trophy, the Hall of Fame is able to overlay a name with a series of X's to cover it up. Wirtz noted in the letter when the Hall of Fame decided to "X" out Basil Pocklington, the father of the former owner of the Edmonton Oilers, whose name was engraved and later covered up because he had nothing to do with the team, AP reported.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Chicago Blackhawks Owner
Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz asked the Hockey Hall of Fame in a letter Thursday to “X” out the name of an assistant coach that was engraved on the Stanley Cup. Above, Wirtz speaks during a press conference in Chicago on November 6, 2018. Kamil Krzaczynski/AP Photo

"That decision, among others, reflects the Cup's storied history of engraving mistakes, misspellings and errors that have ended up enshrined in silver, or been corrected after the fact," Wirtz writes, referring to the removal of Pocklington's name.

ESPN first reported on the letter. A message was left Friday by AP seeking comment from the Hall of Fame.

Wirtz and the Blackhawks are picking up the pieces of the franchise's shattered reputation after it released a report Tuesday detailing how the team's senior leaders badly mishandled the allegations against Aldrich more than a decade ago.

The independent review by a law firm was commissioned by the team in response to two lawsuits filed against the franchise: one by former first-round pick Kyle Beach alleging sexual assault by Aldrich in 2010, and another filed by a former high school student whom Aldrich was convicted of assaulting in Michigan.

Rocky Wirtz said Tuesday that he and Danny Wirtz, his son and the team's CEO, were first made aware of the accusations ahead of the May filing of Beach's lawsuit, an assertion by the owner that also was supported by the report from Jenner & Block.

AP does not typically identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they come forward publicly. Beach spoke with TSN on Wednesday and posted a statement on Twitter on Thursday expressing gratitude for the support he had received in the past couple days.

Stan Bowman, Chicago's general manager and president of hockey operations, resigned in the wake of the report, and the Blackhawks announced that Al MacIsaac, another one of the team's top hockey executives, was no longer with the organization.

The NHL fined the team $2 million for "the organization's inadequate internal procedures and insufficient and untimely response."

The consequences of what the Blackhawks did in 2010—specifically a three-week period during the playoffs when they failed to act on Beach's allegations, allowing Aldrich to remain around the team while it celebrated the championship—reverberated throughout the NHL this week.

Florida Panthers coach Joel Quenneville met with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman on Thursday and then resigned. Winnipeg Jets general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff talked to Bettman on Friday, and the league announced that Cheveldayoff would not be disciplined.

Quenneville and Cheveldayoff were with the Blackhawks when Beach's accusations were first reported to team leadership. Aldrich has told investigators the encounter was consensual.

Stanley Cup Engravings
While an engraved name can’t be removed from the Stanley Cup, the Hockey Hall of Fame is able to overlay a name with a series of X’s to cover it up. Above, the Stanley Cup is shown before the first period of a game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins at Amalie Arena on October 12, 2021, in Tampa, Florida. Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images