Did Redwoods' Garrett Epple remove BLM patch? Internet brands him 'Trump supporter' and 'disgrace to the game'
An angry user wrote, 'You can’t pretend to be progressive and for player safety and let his repeated cheap shots and BS go unchecked any longer'
The 2020 PLL Championship's games have courted controversy in the backdrop of the Black Lives Matter movement after social media users noticed that the BLM patch that PLL endorses has disappeared from the playing teams' jerseys. Many users questioned the strange disappearance of the patch on the jersey of Redwoods' standout player Garrett Epple, while others noticed that the BLM patch was not there even on Chrome’s jersey in the Chrome vs Redwoods match played on Tuesday, July 28. Internet users were quick to lash out at Epple for the disappearance of the patch without verifying the real reason behind it, which is still ambiguous and unspecified.
An angry fan tweeted, “You need to suspend Garret Epple. He is a disgrace to the game. You can’t pretend to be progressive and for player safety and let his repeated cheap shots and BS go unchecked any longer. It’s ridiculous”. Another user posted a picture of Epple in Redwood's jersey, tweeting, “I have no insight regarding the sewing materials being used but it appears Garrett Epple's BLM patch fell off some time after picture day."
Many pictures are doing the rounds on Twitter since the patch became unnoticeable. A picture shows a jersey written ‘Progressives’ on it without the patch but it cannot be clearly stated whether it is authenticated or not. “Could have came off. Could have been taken off. I might be insane and am seeing something where nothing is there” a user tweeted along with the said picture.
Meanwhile, other users are saying that they cannot see the patch on Chrome's shirts too. “I don’t know one way or the other, but whoever this is in chromes picture also doesn’t have it so it may be the jersey sewing or it may not be” tweeted a user.
Even before the 2020 PLL Championship Series began, the league made a point to back the Black Lives Matter Movement. It gave players the chance to wear BLM patches on their jerseys and wear BLM warmup shirts. Also, to show solidarity for the BLM movement, the Black players in the league heralded their message by posting a video on social media, in which they said, “I stand for all black and women who have been silenced, in sports and beyond." The players featured in the video were vocal about representing the Black community after protests erupted in America under the movement.
Hence, people are left wondering how can the PLL allow the removal of the patch. “Can't say I'm shocked but my focus is on the league allowing this. Sure have your own beliefs but when you're the employer and you say you're presenting a united front you can't have obvious insubordination if you're to be believed”, tweeted a follower of League’s championship.
Some people on social media thrusted their political opinions by calling Epple a pro-Trump player and were too quick to judge him. “He’s a trump supporter so the BLM patch was probably burning his skin." Others believed that one must not pull in their political inclinations in sports and label players without any rational facts.
“Who care let people have their own opinions? Don’t need to force political opinions on everyone” a user tweeted. The game between the teams was full of thrill where Redwoods fought nack after falling into a deep pit, but Chrome finally turned out to be the winners with a final score of 12-11.