Canadian Hockey Fan Throws Banana at Philadelphia Flyers’ Wayne Simmonds
A fan in Ontario threw a banana at “black hockey player” Wayne Simmonds during a shootout attempt in an NHL preseason game.
My first reaction was curiosity: How could a man in the upper deck threw a banana peel so accurately that it landed directly in Wayne Simmonds’ path during a shootout goal? Good for him. Then I realized that Wayne Simmonds is black and this could be a pretty blatant act of racism. It very suddenly stopped being funny.
Then you begin to question it – because nobody can be that stupid. Racism is all but dead, right? What if it was just the only thing that this fan could throw on the ice to impede him and he’s just a bad sport? Vancouver did riot after their lost Stanley Cup, right? A banana… really? Who eats bananas at hockey games? Which means he probably planned to bring it… which means it was probably deliberate… which means it was probably racist.
As Simmonds noted after the game, he probably would have just gotten to shoot again even if it slowed him down. There was absolutely nothing practical about this act. Let’s accept it as overtly racist and absolutely terrible.
Okay, so a racist hockey fan in Canada threw a banana at a black hockey player.
For starters it’s a shame. These aren’t teenage idiots trying to bother Simmonds as he climbs the hockey ladder, this is a grown idiot throwing a banana on the ice. What if it had been a rock? The guy walked away unpunished afterwards, so it’s at least a little bit scary.
Secondly, the Thrashers marketed their team last season to try to feed off the Atlanta culture. The Thrashers were the first team in NHL history with five black players on their roster. Those black players are now in Canada, playing for the Winnipeg Jets. Are those Manitoba outsiders in danger?
This is a big deal. It’s not tragic like most of the offseason was, but it’s certainly scary. Hopefully the game has advanced to the point that this one idiot won’t affect any future games. That said – nobody told security who threw the banana even though I’m sure someone saw it. Nobody stopped him as he slipped away and nobody turned him in. He won’t be banned from the arena, because nobody knows who he is.
Let’s hope this is a lone nut who can only afford to Stubhub a single ticket to a preseason game in the upper deck and this won’t happen again.
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