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A timeline of how Jordan Binnington became the NHL’s biggest villain

A timeline of how Jordan Binnington became the NHL's biggest villain

They say every sport needs a villain, and St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington appears all too happy to play this role — constantly appearing in the news cycle for trying to antagonize opponents or pretending he wants to fight the world seemingly every time he has a rough night.

During Wednesday’s loss to the Minnesota Wild, Binnington threw another temper tantrum, delivering a cheap shot to Wild forward Ryan Hartman after scoring the go-ahead goal. Wild goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury attempted to defend Hartman but the linesman intervened before a proper fracas could break out.

Binnington rose to stardom after carrying the Blues to their first-ever Stanley Cup in 2019. In the ensuing four years, both his play and popular appeal waned significantly.

Here’s a timeline of how Binnington became the NHL’s top pest:

April 10, 2019: A former San Jose Sharks beat reporter named Paul Gackle uncovers racist, since-deleted tweets made by Binnington while he was a teenager in the Ontario Hockey League, and another one sent when he was a 21-year-old in the American Hockey League.

The first one dated January 25, 2013 reads: “I was thinking when people wear the burkas are at the airport how is the security able to see if that’s them in their passport….srsly.”

Binnington doubled down, tweeting: “Also If you’re underage & nervous of getting into a bar, throw the damn burka on. no way the bouncer will get into that awkward questioning.”

Binnington was unrepentant and sent another racist tweet on October 22, 2014.

“Ya taxi man I’d probably rather listen to the radio than listen to you talk on the phone in another language,” Binnington wrote.

After these tweets surfaced and drew universal outrage from hockey fans, Binnington showed little remorse.

“It was a while ago when I was a teenager,” Binnington said via The Athletic’s Jeremy Rutherford. “It was a little sarcasm and joking around. That’s what life is about, you live and learn and you grow as a human. I’m just here to play a couple hockey games.”

Binnington would go on to lead the Blues to a Stanley Cup victory, with most media outlets and personalities promoting his rise from unheralded prospect to Cup-winning goaltender as a feel-good, meteoric ascension — without much mention of the other stuff.

October 17, 2019: Vancouver Canucks forward Elias Pettersson dekes Binnington out, then proceeds to jam away at the puck during a wild goalmouth scrum, before Bo Horvat

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