Last winter, former Tri-City Americans defenseman Clayton Stoner was lucky enough to win one of only 300 a grizzly bear hunting licenses through a British Columbia limited entry lottery. Little did the current Minnesota Wild player know a photo taken after his successful hunt would put him at the center of controversy.

Last May, during a hunting trip through the Great Bear Rainforest in British Columbia, Stoner shot and killed a grizzly, rumored to be 'friendly and loved' in the community. The photo above, showing the 28-year-old holding the decapitated head of the bear, recently surface online. It drew criticism from wildlife campaigners and animal lovers because Stoner skinned the bear, removed the head and paws and then left the rest of the carcass to be scavenged.

According to the Vancouver Sun Stoner was unapologetic for his actions and said:

I grew up hunting and fishing in British Columbia and continue to enjoy spending time with my family outdoors. I applied for and received a grizzly bear hunting license through a British Columbia limited entry lottery last winter and shot a grizzly bear with my license while hunting with my father, uncle and a friend in May. I love to hunt and fish and will continue to do so with my family and friends in British Columbia.

Local environmentalists and the coastal First Nations say that the sport of trophy-hunting is 'disgusting and barbaric' and have been urging local authorities to enforce a ban on the bloodsport.

This will come down to whether you agree with hunting or not. Since Stoner attained the proper permit to legally hunt, I believe acted fully within his rights. What do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.