Countdown to the Games
17-25 June 2023

A sign for inclusion at the NHL Global Series

The photo was taken at the traditional puck drop during the Ice Hockey NHL Global Series Challenge - San Jose Sharks v. Eisbaren Berlin - with our athelte Juliana Rößler. The Special Olympics athlete mastered this honorable task with a smile on her lips.
Special Olympics Berlin 16.06.2022 Workshop bei der Designerin Anja Gockel Foto: Tilo Wiedensohler/camera4
Amanda Cain/NHLI via Getty Images

Together with Special Olympics, the National Hockey League (NHL) sets an example for more inclusion in our society: Special Olympics athlete Juliana Rößler and former German-Canadian NHL professional Rob Zepp opened the NHL's Germany guest game in Berlin with the puck drop.

It was a great honor to open the game.
The photo shows kayakist Juliana Rößler after winning the kayaking race during the Special Olympics National Games Berlin 2022, holding her paddle above her head in jubilation.
Juliana Rößler
Special Olympics Canoeist

Instead of ice time, equal participation: During the NHL Global Series game between the San Jose Sharks and the Eisbären Berlin at the Mercedes-Benz Arena, the claim of the Special Olympics World Games 2023 in Berlin could be read on the helmets of all Sharks players: #UnbeatableTogether (German: #ZusammenUnschlagbar).

"I was insanely excited before the start of the game," told successful canoeist Juliana Rößler.

"At the same time, it was also a great honor to open the game. It feels good to have the NHL by our side when it comes to standing up for openness towards people with intellectual disabilities," said the gold medalist at the 2019 World Games in Abu Dhabi.

The photo shows the Eisbären Berlin mascot, two players and two representatives of Special Olympics. All cheer joyfully in the direction of the camera.

"Setting a visible example for diversity is important to us as the NHL, and inclusion is of course an essential part of this. That's why we wanted to draw attention to the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 with our visit to Germany.

We can only support promoting the power of sports for equal participation of all people in all areas of life," said Marc Black, NHL Vice President International Operations, about the commitment in Berlin.

In the NHL's guest game, the San Jose Sharks beat the host Eisbären Berlin 3:1 in front of 12,000 visitors at the Mercedes-Benz Arena.


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