AP Photo/Chris O'Meara
The NHL said there was no evidence to support the allegations against Ian Cole.
The NHL made a statement.
Two separate interviews with Mr. Cole were part of the investigation. There was a detailed review of on-line and social media, public data, and court records. Despite attempts by the League to get in touch with the anonymous source of the social media post, they were unsuccessful.
The matter is now considered closed by the National Hockey League.
Following the league's investigation, the NHL players' association released a statement.✨ Watch more top videos, highlights, and B/R original content
Cole was suspended by the Lightning pending the results of an investigation. According to The Athletic's Joe Smith, the veteran is back.
Cole said in his statement that he was looking forward to clearing his name and demonstrating to the NHL and the Bolts that the allegations were not true.
Cole was accused of sexually abusing a woman over a four-year period that began when she was a minor.
The woman said that Cole knew she was a minor when he had sex with her. Cole was accused of having sexual relations with other teens.
The woman alleged that Cole would frequently make misogynistic, derogatory comments towards her and that he manipulated and humiliated her.
The woman said that Ian felt encouraged to emotionally and sexually abuse her and other women because of the NHL's culture of sexism. The NHL needs to be held accountable for creating a misogynistic and predatory environment.
Cole, who signed a one-year, $3 million deal with the Lightning in July, missed the first two games of the season. It's not clear if he will play in the game against Pittsburgh.
He was selected in the first round of the NHL draft. He made his NHL debut in 2010 and has played for six teams over the course of 12 years.