Her Wild Side Hockey Podcast

In this episode, Mikki talks about the rape culture within the hockey world and how it's been a lightning rod this week on social media. CW: rape, sexual assault, swearing.

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Creators & Guests

Wild Hockey Fan | Cozy Mystery Writer | Mom of 2 | MN Raised | She/Her | Hockey Takes that No One Asked For

What is Her Wild Side Hockey Podcast?

Her Wild Side combines hockey knowledge with a side of vibe checks. The weekly show will have game breakdowns, any topical news about the MN Wild, and fun things going on surrounding Wild's social media. This show aims to be informative while also sparking good conversation about the Wild and hockey in general without having to keep everything serious.


welcome to Herb Wildside Hockey Podcast.

I am your hostess, Miki,

and as you can see,

this is not a typical episode.

I'm going to tell you right

now that there is going to

be swearing in this podcast.

There is going to be talk

about rape culture and sexual assault.

And so I completely

understand if that is not okay with you,

something you don't want to listen to.

But it is an important issue

in professional hockey.

So if you can,

I'd love you to stick around

and listen to what I have to say.

Because like I said, as you can see,

I don't even have the green screen up.

I literally was just like,

I kicked my husband out of

his office and I was like,

I need to record something right now.

Because... Okay, well, we'll get into...

I'm trying to just organize

all my thoughts because

usually I have a whole page.

You can't see what I've written,

but it's butterfly shape.

Usually I have a whole page

of notes about different

things I want to talk about.

Today I literally have a

sticky note shaped like a butterfly.

It's got like five things on it.

And I'll actually say that

kind of this whole thing, oddly enough,

started off outside,

somewhat outside of the NHL

space where I...

decided to.

Sometimes I like to take on

the trolls just because I

think it's funny.

I decided to wade into the

argument about trans

athletes and specifically in hockey,

which is funny because

there have been trans

athletes in previous

iterations of women's

professional hockey.

And it was never a big deal.

But anyway,

so I was already kind of in my

ranty stage and

Because I was going up against TERFs,

trans-exclusive radical feminists,

who are not correct.

They're not right.

They do not have good talking points.

They do not know what

they're talking about.

And they will not argue in good faith.

So I was having a little fun with that.


let's just say that's where this all



Like I said,

if you would like if you don't

want to listen to this, that's fine.

I am going to put on our

quick ESPN plus commercial

that gives you a chance to

kind of decide if you want

to shut it off or if you want to stay.

Stick around and listen to a

discussion of something

very important that we need

to figure out what to do about.

So stick around or, you know,

in the next minute you can decide.

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okay welcome back let me

make very clear that these

are my viewpoints okay um

yes I'm affiliated with

other things other uh the

podcast network these are

my my ideas and my things

that I have to say my

viewpoints hockey culture now

When I think of a culture,

I like to think of the positive aspects.

Now, obviously,

I'm thinking more about

countries or ethnicities

and maybe art that

surrounds it or food or customs.

And I hate that it is kind

of co-opted in the honky

world to mean rich white

boys can do whatever they want,

specifically sexual assault.

Because that's kind of what it's used for.

It's always, oh, well,

it's just hockey culture.

Hockey culture right now

equals rape culture.

And I don't know why people

are OK with that.

Not only OK with that,

but unwilling to try to

change it and unwilling to

admit if they make a mistake.

Here's the thing.

We all kind of grow up, you know,

remember when you were back

in middle school or high

school and even in college,

I think about jokes that I

made or jokes that I laughed at,

things that I thought were funny.

And I cringe now as an adult

because I have done the

work to realize that it wasn't funny.

And while I can cringe all I want,

you know, I didn't know,

but then I learned.

So I do better.


that's what we need to do here in the

hockey culture at large,

not just the NHL.


the NHL is just where it has

the biggest platform and so

therefore is spread the most.

What we need to do, I get it, yep,

here that was part of the culture,

but we need to learn more and do better.

So if you are not on social media,

you're going to be like, wow,

what is happening?

Where did this come from?

Like, did Nikki go cuckoo?

I'm always cuckoo, just so you know.

I'm reluctant to describe

what the picture actually was.

But let's just say that it

was about two teams that

are playing in the playoffs

against each other.

And someone had to sit and

feed this all into an AI

machine to make this picture.

And this was a very specific picture.

It was two bears, a Bruins bear,

and then a Maple Leafs bear, who,

I may add,

was wearing a dress and kind of

high heels.

So it was made to be feminine.

And the feminine bear was

being violated by the Bruins bear.

And the one being violated was crying.

And people have thought this is funny.

And they have shared it.

And the worst part is when

people came in and said, hey, hold on,

this is not funny.

This is not a joke.

You should not.

There are other ways to

express the playoffs and

how the Bruins and the

Leafs are doing versus each other.

There are many other jokes

that would be much funnier

if someone put the time and

the effort into it,

as they did with this picture.

And instead of learning from it,

they double down.

I don't see anything wrong with it.

It's lowbrow humor.

Except it is not.

You know what?

Lowbrow humor?


You know what?

Go on with a poop joke or something.

That's lowbrow humor.

A fart joke.

That's lowbrow humor.

A rape joke?

That's just fucking disgusting.

I don't see anything wrong with it.

You know what?

Here's the thing.

You might not.

You might think it is so funny.

I guarantee that you have

women in your life.

who have been sexually assaulted or raped.

And they see you thinking it's funny.

And you'll say, well,

I don't know anyone like that.

Can I tell you how many

women this has happened to

that do not share it with

people or share it with very few people?

Because there is such a stigma around it.

If they see you laughing at it,

do you think they're going

to share with you, hey, by the way,

one time I was raped?


If you think it's funny,

you are now not a safe

person to share things like that with.

And you should feel ashamed of that.

Here's the thing,

instead of sitting here and

getting confrontational

because people are going to

listen to this, watch this,

they already have on social

media and they're going to


they're going to get angry.

And I get it.

You know, everyone wants to save face,


The correct thing for you to

do is to stop and look

inward at yourself.

And do a little bit of work

about why you would think this is funny.

Now, this instance...

It was not made by the

person who shared it with

the highest reach.

I'm trying not to use names here.

I don't want to use names here.

But the person who used it

is a very high level professional,

which I would say is debatable.

Hockey personality.

With a very,

very large platform on social media.

And as far as I have seen.

After sharing this with the

uproar has done absolutely

nothing to even address it.

They posted it and they just

went right on by, they don't even care.

And that's, again, disgusting.

If you have one of the biggest platforms,

not only for adults, but also children.


young hockey players listen and

watch this media.

And they're going to think this is OK.

And this plays into the

whole culture at large,

because when it is made

into a joke and it seems to

be an OK thing to joke about.

That's just what they're going to know.

They're going to see someone

that they idolize,

that they think is cool, that they follow,

they like, they think it's funny.

And then, oh, well,

they think rape is okay to joke about.

So it's no problem if I do.

And guess what?

When rape is made into a joke,

then it has this level,

this foundation of rape is okay.

And people are right away.

No, that's not what it means.

That is not.


When you make something into a joke,

that means that it is not a

serious topic anymore to you.

And that means that you are

OK ignoring it.

Therefore, making it OK.

For specifically hockey players, because,


usually they are going to be higher class,

middle class white men who already.

have privilege and they are

going to just think it's OK.

Look at the different world junior teams.

Look at the hazing on

different teams all the way

down to like high school teams.

It's not OK.

None of it is OK.

And we need to call it out.

Now, unfortunately,

people that do try to call it out,

such as me.

many of my friends on social media,

we are simply slapped down

in the worst ways.

I mean, always people that just,

they do not give a shit.

And they are simply there to troll.

And guess, like I said earlier,

you know what?

I will troll a bigot all day, every day.

If you are a hateful person,

I'm okay saying, making jokes to you.

This is different.

This is making victims into the joke.

People who did not welcome

this into their life,

it was not a decision they

made to get raped or to be

sexually assaulted.

And you're making them into a joke.

Now, this was already bad enough, right?

uproar, people going crazy,

disgusting trolls just

there to try and needle

people who are already taking a stand.

And then last night.

The Tampa Bay Lightning lost their series,

they're out of the playoffs,

they're done with the season.

And the coach.

In the final,

like his interview afterwards.

made I mean it was I don't

even know how to describe

this he's talking about

there were two three

different goal calls that

were called back um goalie

interference I don't know

like it was if you didn't

watch it was a whole thing

anyway and he was making

very good points they would

ask him about that he was

making points about what he

thought about the goalie

interference having goals

called back especially in

such a game that was so

close and had such ramifications

But then all of a sudden, out of nowhere,

basically, he says,

might as well put skirts on them.

As in the goalies.

What the fuck does that even mean?

The only reason this was

funny was that somehow...

They were women like I don't understand.

It literally made no sense.

It felt like one of those, you know,

sometimes you'll see where

they like in training camp,

you'll see someone be like,

I dare you to see how many

times you can say hot dog

during your press conference, you know,

and then it's just it is funny.

And, you know,

they'll like throw in the

word hot dog and and, you know,

you're thinking, oh,

that's kind of weird.

And then you see later that

that was like a challenge.

You're like, OK, that makes more sense.

It felt like someone before

the press conference pulled

him aside and was like,

I want you to make a sexist

joke and toss it in there.

Let's see if you can do it.

And he did.

And it didn't even make sense.

It didn't even make sense.

I'm just I'm so tired.

I'm so tired.

And I hate that.

First of all,

no one even followed up on him.

No one was like, skirts on your goalies?

Can you clarify what you mean by that?

And no one is going to say anything.

No one from the high-level

media will call them out.

You know who calls them out?

People like me with small platforms.


I know.

I don't have a ton of followers.

I don't have a ton of listeners.

That's okay with me.

I like what I do.

But the fact is,

the fact remains that it is

people like me, small podcasts,

small personalities,

people who write for smaller websites.

We're the ones calling them

out because we're willing

to put it on the line.

In a way,

I understand why someone with a

larger platform,

someone with a high paying media job,

I get why they would be hesitant.

But again, we all see you.

We see the ones who say

something and we see the ones who don't.

We see the ones who ignore it.

And we remember.

Earlier in the season,

I talked about the LGBTQ

plus community within hockey and how

I, you know,

I'm always wanting to support them.

And I think I want to just

extend and like broaden

that because I've talked

about I'm a hockey mom.

My kid is only six.

He's been in many nights for two years.

You know,

there isn't much I can do at this

level yet.

But I want to be a presence

in his hockey life.

To call out bullshit.

That includes not only using a slur,

that includes inappropriate

jokes like rape or sexual assault.

People need to call it out.

And unfortunately,

even when it is called out,

that does not mean that the

person will face consequences.

And it's hard because many of us,

we remember.

We remember the players who

were on the World Juniors team,

even if they weren't part

of the five who were like the big,

like the bad actors.

From what everything has said,

everybody on the team knew.

That means that anybody that

played on that team knew

what happened and did jack shit about it.

They did not care that this

young woman's life was ruined.

I don't care if they didn't laugh at it.

I don't care if they didn't

respond to the message.

They read it.

And they moved on with their lives.

And that's disgusting.

I think I'm coming to the end of my rant.

I just...

I'm tired.

And aren't we all?

But if you're listening, watching,

whatever, keep calling it out.

The more people that call it out,

despite backlash,

despite what other people say or think,

that is what is going to prompt change.

More and more people will be

willing to stand up and say

that things are not funny,

say that they don't like it,

And if we get started, you know,

it's the ripple effect.

And it will ripple out, hopefully,

into hockey culture as a whole.

Because that's where it's needed.


This is enough of a rant.

I am just, you know,

quick going to throw my

little ticket master thing up.

And people are like, oh, well,

you just went on a rant.

Now you want us to pay.

You know what?

Shut up.

That's all I have to say.

The affiliate code is in the show notes.

Otherwise it is up on this

QR code is up on the screen

here in the video.

And you know what?

I'm just asking for support

because that helps pay our bills.

You know,

it helps pay for how we record

the show and where we host

it and all that stuff.

So anyway, there that is.

If you have any questions or whatever,

Ask me.

If you want to talk in good faith.

I will.

You know,

it's it's just the the trolls

that are hard because it's

like they don't they're not

there in good faith.

So until next time,

I hope everyone is

otherwise enjoying the playoffs.

And next time we talk,

it'll be a little bit less ranty.

So everyone have a good day.