Each year a group of male hockey players unite and compete against each other in order to record the best skate time. Until this year, not one female hockey player has competed in the NHL’s All Star Competition. Competitors that participate in the competition play in the NHL, so they are all male. However, this year Brianna Decker along with several other women were invited to participate in the competition.
This year, CCM paid Brianna Decker $25k for recording a time three seconds faster than Edmonton Oilers’ forward Leon Draisaitl in San Jose. Leon Draisaitl completed his lap around the perimeter of the ice surface in 1.09 minutes. Due to his speedy performance, Draisaitl was offered a $25,000 bonus. However, Decker was offered nothing for her amazing record. Spectators and hockey fans from around the world were very displeased with Decker receiving nothing but a thank you.
After hearing about the unfortunate event, manufacturing brand CCM provided Brianna Decker with her very own $25,000 and offered her a position as an ambassador for many other female hockey players. Clearly, this underscores the inequity between male and female athletes. In the article “Women Leaders in Sport: Where’s the gender equity?” we learn that girls are becoming more engaged in sport. However, women are not being viewed as sport leaders. Women are still being underrepresented as coaches and leaders in high school sports.
I believe that providing Brianna Decker with the same amount of money as the male NHL player is a sign that we are heading in a positive direction towards attaining gender equity in sport. Hopefully in the future, professional women athletes will be receiving the same amount of money as professional men athletes.