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Krystof Hrabik suspended for 30 games after allegedly making racial gesture, American Hockey League says

San Jose Barracuda forward Krystof Hrabik was suspended for 30 games after he made a racial gesture at a Black player during a game earlier this month, the American Hockey League announced Friday. He will be eligible to return to the ice on April 3. 

On January 13, San Jose's management was told that Hrabik allegedly made a "monkey gesture" towards Tucson Roadrunners player Boko Imama at a game the day prior, CBS Sports reported. The league confirmed the incident through a video. 

Tri-City Americans v Everett Silvertips
Tri-City Americans forward Krystof Hrabik #20 carries the puck into the neutral zone during a game between the Everett Silvertips and Tri-City Americans at Angel of the Winds Arena on November 24, 2019, in Everett, Washington. Getty Images

The Barracudas said Hrabik was "immediately removed from all team activities" as the league investigated the incident. 

Arizona Coyotes President and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez said Habrik's "ignorance is astounding and unacceptable." 

"We are appalled by the disgusting and blatantly racist gesture that was displayed to Boko during the Roadrunners game at San Jose on Jan. 12 and support the AHL's action and suspension," Gutierrez said in a statement Friday. "There is no place in society, or in our game, for racism or abuse of any kind."

The Barracudas and San Jose Sharks organizations apologized for Habrik's actions.

"While we support the ability for individuals to atone and learn from disrespectful incidents in this context, these actions are in direct opposition to the Barracuda and Sharks organizations' values," the team said in a statement Friday. 

Hrabik will attend educational training on inclusion and antiracism with the National Hockey League's Player Inclusion Committee as part of his suspension, the AHL said. The Barracudas and Sharks said they also have partnered with the anti-harassment organization, RESPECT Group, to facilitate workshops for both players and staff. 

Hrabik has already served three games of his suspension, and will be eligible to apply for a reduction and reinstatement after March 12, pending progress of his necessary education and progress evaluation by the league's president and CEO Scott Howson, the AHL said. 

"The AHL stands with Boko Imama," Howson said Friday. "It is unfair that any player should be subjected to comments or gestures based on their race. They should be judged only on their ability to perform as a player on the ice, as a teammate in the locker room and as a member of their community."

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