Washington Capitals share message, game invite to youth team of 13-year-old player who faced racist taunts

Shortly after P.K. Subban made a video encouraging a young player who was targeted by racial abuse to keep playing, the Washington Capitals are following suit for Divyne Apollon II. Apollon, a 13-year-old who plays for the Maryland-based Metro Maple Leafs, was also harassed by racist taunts. It got to the point that Apollon's team ended up getting into a fight the Pennsylvania squad after standing up for their teammate.

Apollon and the Leafs got a surprise this week when the Capitals invited them to next Monday's game game against the St. Louis Blues. The team was invited via a video message from John Carlson and Devante Smith-Pelly, and their reaction is pretty fantastic.

The team will be included in a video and shown on the Jumbotron during the game.

Smith-Pelly is no stranger to racism being directed toward hockey players. Some Blackhawks fans were ejected from the United Center for harassing Smith-Pelly while he was in the penalty box last season.

"For me to meet [Apollon] and look him in the face as someone who's gone through it and can talk to him and share my experience is important to me," Smith-Pelly told the Capitals website.. "It's a pretty gross thing to be happening."

"Keep playing and keep standing up for yourself," he advised Apollon in conclusion.

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