The Miami (Ohio) hockey team has a proud tradition, but few things make their players more proud than their accepting, welcoming attitude toward all people including gays and lesbians. We talked with several players and the team's head coach for an article, out today. One of their strongest voices in the team's fight against homophobia is Andy Miele (right, No. 17), the NCAA's leading scorer in 2011 and a hot NHL prospect:
Everything with Brendan coming out, it brought the team so much closer. It was a great feeling. The support everyone gave to Brendan was unbelievable. It bonded the team. And I know other teams could benefit from that.
Interestingly, many players said the team environment was relatively gay-friendly before Burke came out, but the presence of a gay person made them even more aware of the issues, particularly anti-gay epithets.