This U.S. men's hockey star is set to make Olympic history.

He'll become the first black hockey player to take the ice for Team USA in Olympics history.

In the 98 years that hockey has been an Olympic sport, no black athlete has ever been named to a Team USA roster — until now.

20-year-old Jordan Greenway is poised to make history when he takes the ice at next month's Winter Olympics. The Boston University forward was officially named to the team's roster earlier this week, and since then, he has found himself the center of a glowing profile by Sporting News.

With NHL players absent from this year's games — the league opted not to put a break in the season schedule as they'd done in years past — Greenway is arguably the face of U.S. hockey thanks to his newfound fame. (At least for the next month or so.)


Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images.

Like many Winter Olympic sports, hockey is still very white, though its makeup is slowly changing.

Greenway understands that no matter what happens later in his promising career, this moment represents a unique opportunity to inspire a younger generation.

"I’ve been able to accomplish a lot of good things and just allowing a lot of African American kids who are younger than me who see kind of what I’m doing, I hope that can be an inspiration for them," he told Sporting News. "Go out and do something different against the typical stereotypes that most African-Americans play basketball, or whatever the case is."

Jordan Greenway scores against Connor Ingram of Team Canada during a preliminary round game in the 2017 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship in 2016 in Toronto. The USA defeated Canada 3-1. Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images

The profile notes that Greenway is just one of 13 African American athletes playing Division I men's hockey, making up less than one percent of the total. When it comes to the pros, black athletes are represented slightly better, though they still account for just 2.29% of all players.

For what it's worth, the NHL has been investing time, money, and energy into increasing league diversity in past years.

Individual teams like the Philadelphia Flyers, New York Rangers, Washington Capitals, Chicago Blackhawks, and San Jose Sharks, have launched inner-city outreach programs aimed at making hockey accessible to kids of all backgrounds and income levels.

"We want to get sticks in the hands of kids by taking the cost out of by [sic] letting them play. They learn about hockey, they learn about teamwork and they learn about the sport," Chicago Blackhawks senior director of Fan Development Annie Camins told Rolling Stone in 2016. More than 90,000 kids have participated in the team's program since its launch.

Children in Vancouver are seen playing street hockey during the 2010 Winter Olympics. Photo by Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty Images.

The 2018 Olympic Winter Games run from February 9-24 in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Most Shared

Mom and blogger Mary Katherine Backstrom regularly shares snippets of life with her two children on her Facebook page. One particularly touching interaction with her daughter is melting hearts and blowing minds due to the three-year-old's wise words about forgiveness.

Even adults struggle with the concept of forgiveness. Entire books have been written about how and why to forgive those who have wronged us, but many still have a hard time getting it. Who would guess that a preschooler could encapsulate what forgiveness means in a handful of innocent words?

Keep Reading Show less
Family

California has a housing crisis. Rent is so astronomical, one San Francisco company is offering bunk bedsfor $1,200 a month; Google even pledged$1 billion to help tackle the issue in the Bay Area. But the person who might fix it for good? Kanye West.

The music mogul first announced his plan to build low-income housing on Twitter late last year.

"We're starting a Yeezy architecture arm called Yeezy home. We're looking for architects and industrial designers who want to make the world better," West tweeted.

Keep Reading Show less
Cities

The U.S. women's soccer team won the Women's World Cup, but the victory is marred by the fact that the team is currently fighting for equal pay. In soccer, the game is won by scoring points, but the fight for equal pay isn't as clearly winnable and the playing field isn't as even.

We live in a world where winning the World Cup is easier than winning equal pay, but co-captain Megan Rapinoe says there's one easy way fans can support the team: Go see games.

Some people argue the men's team deserves to get paid more because they are more successful and earn more money for the United States Soccer Federation. Pay depends on merchandise and ticket sales, and in general, men's sporting events tend to draw a bigger crowd than women's sporting events. It's not about sex, many argue; it's about the fact that people just prefer to see men play.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

You think you know someone pretty well when you spend years with them, but, as we've seen time and again, that's not always the case. And though many relationships don't get to a point where the producers of "Who the (Bleep) Did I Marry?" start calling every day just to chat, the reality is that sometimes partners will reveal shocking things even after you thought you'd been all shocked out.

That's the case for one woman whose Reddit thread has recently gone viral. The 25-year-old, who's been with her boyfriend for five years, took to a forum for relationship advice to ask if it was normal that her seemingly cool and loving boyfriend recently revealed women shouldn't have a fundamental right. (And no, it's not abortion — although there are a lot of "otherwise best ever boyfriends" out there who want to deny women the rights to bodily autonomy, too.)

Keep Reading Show less
Recommended