After the team said it would not boycott the NFL’s national anthem, some players took to social media to call for players to be fired.
The response from the Dallas Stars, which has not yet announced whether it will boycott the national act, was similarly swift.
Stars captain Jamie Benn tweeted his support for the kneeling players and said he would “support those who do not.”
Stars captain Tyler Seguin also spoke out, saying, “We will stand for our anthem.”
The Dallas Stars are the only NHL team that has not said it will not participate in the anthem.
But the team’s fans have been quick to voice their disapproval.
Stars owner Bill Foley told the Dallas Morning News that he had no plans to boycott the anthem, but “I am disappointed in the way the protests have been handled.”
The Stars said they will honor the anthem in their postgame show.
“We support our athletes and we will continue to support our players,” the team tweeted.
The Stars are in their final three games of the regular season before playing the Nashville Predators on Thursday night.
Dallas’ coach Lindy Ruff, who was the coach of the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning in the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs, said he was “proud” of his players and “am proud” to support them.
“They are my kids,” Ruff said.
“It’s their job to make decisions for themselves, and I think it’s a great thing to do.”
Stars fans and players have long held strong views about the anthem protests, and the protests were a part of that.
The Dallas fans who kneeled for the anthem last season wore T-shirts emblazoned with a star that was also emblazed.
They also booed after the Stars scored during the anthem that was part of the team theme song.
Stars forward Colton Sissons, who has played for the Stars in the past, was booed again after the anthem during the first period.
“I think it hurts the team and hurt our fans,” Ruff told the Stars’ official website.
“Hopefully we can come back from this.”