The IOC has a policy that prohibits the depiction of political symbols, and viewed these helmets as a possible violation of that rule, USA Today reported. However, the ones worn by two members of the US women's hockey team are stirring up controversy for an unexpected reason; because they include images of the Statue of Liberty.
The IOC released a statement Tuesday, claiming the initial helmet story was a "misunderstanding".
It remains to be answered why the International Olympic Committee has allowed USA Hockey to use the symbol after asking Korean goalie Matt Dalton to remove the image of 16th century naval commander Adm. Yi Sun-sin from his mask.
Hensley, who helped the USA women capture the past two world championships, has a large Statue of Liberty image painted on the left side of her mask.
"No Item may feature the wording or lyrics from national anthems, motivational words, public/political messaging or slogans related to national identity."
Neither goalie played in Team USA's opening game, as Maddie Rooney, whose helmet is absent any Statue of Libery iconography, started in the team's 3-1 win over Finland.
Alex Rigsby was proud of her new helmet. United States men's goalie Ryan Zapolski said he faced many limitations when looking at his helmet designs.
"I talked to the guy who painted it and we brainstormed for about a week and he gave me a sketch and I wanted a crest of the stars and stripes".
Feb 5, 2018; Gangneung, KOR; USA goalie Alex Rigsby (33) looks on during a training session for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games at Kwandong Hockey Centre.
Hensley was seen wearing it during the Group A match against the Olympic Athletes from Russian Federation today.