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NHL’s first Black player, Willie O’Ree, discusses his legacy on and off ice – “The Takeout”


This week, “The Takeout” podcast host Major Garrett shares an extended interview with the National Hockey League’s first Black player, Willie O’Ree. O’Ree entered the NHL in 1958 with the Boston Bruins, and persevered through racial discrimination and an injury that left him blind in his right eye. 

The Boston Bruins retired O’Ree’s number-22 jersey this week, and Congress passed the Willie O’Ree Congressional Gold Medal Act honoring him for breaking hockey’s racial barrier. O’Ree currently works as the NHL’s director of youth development and diversity ambassador. 

Senator Debbie Stabenow, Democrat of Michigan, and Congressman Mike Quigley, Democrat of Illinois, who sponsored the legislation, offer their thoughts on O’Ree’s legacy on and off the ice. If you missed it, you can watch Major’s “CBS Mornings” piece on O’Ree here.

Executive producer: Arden Farhi


Producers: Jamie Benson, Jacob Rosen, Sara Cook and Eleanor Watson

CBSN Production: Eric Soussanin 
Show email: [email protected]
Twitter: @TakeoutPodcast
Instagram: @TakeoutPodcast

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