Johnny Gaudreau & Blue Jackets Fans Support Patrik Laine’s Mental Health Initiative

The Columbus Blue Jackets and their community have supported Patrik Laine amidst his mental health struggles, with teammate Johnny Gaudreau joining Laine’s initiative to donate $1,000 for every point scored to mental health resources, in response to insensitive comments and to continue raising awareness and funds for men’s mental health.

The Columbus Blue Jackets and their fans have really come together. They’re supporting forward Patrik Laine after some pretty insensitive online comments about his mental health struggles. Johnny Gaudreau, his teammate, is stepping up big time. He’s launching an initiative to raise money for men’s mental health awareness.

Before the season kicked off, Laine had this awesome idea. He pledged to donate $1,000 to the OhioHealth Foundation’s mental health resources for every point he scored. Then, last month, Laine had to step away. He entered the NHL/NHLPA player assistance program to tackle his own mental health challenges.

Things got a bit rough last week. Some thoughtless comments about Laine’s mental health battle surfaced on a podcast. Laine didn’t let it slide; he called them out on social media. With Laine sidelined, Gaudreau decided he couldn’t just watch. He’s now donating $1,000 for every point he scores for the rest of the season. The team’s all for it.

Gaudreau had a chat with the media about it. “We miss Patty,” he said, talking about how the locker room felt emptier without Laine. He admired Laine’s initiative from the get-go. “When I saw what he was doing, I knew it was for a great cause. And when he had to step away, I figured I’d step in,” Gaudreau explained. He was quick to clarify, though. The podcast’s cruel words weren’t his motivation. He’d already decided during the All-Star break to join Laine’s cause.

“No, I decided over the break I wanted to do this,” Gaudreau reiterated. He expressed disappointment over the podcast’s remarks. “It’s tough, seeing someone get kicked when they’re down.” Meanwhile, Blue Jackets fans are showing their love for Laine in a big way. They’ve been donating to the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation. Influencer Nasher suggested fans donate $29, matching Laine’s jersey number. The Columbus Dispatch reported that the foundation has seen more than $10,000 from over 200 donations.

It’ll be interesting to see the final tally. Especially with Gaudreau pushing hard to end the season strong. So far, through 52 games, he’s scored 7 goals and made 28 assists. Let’s see what happens next.

Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson is a Senior Writer for HockeyMonitor. With a background in Sports Media, Alex joined the team in 2022. He focuses on providing the latest hockey news, game scores, and fresh NHL trade rumors.

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