I post on numerous hockey forums and see many things that are said by fans of many teams. It is playoff time once again and thus it is also the time of year where people say ignorant things and that ignorance can come back and haunt them. I've seen so many dumb comments from Columbus fans calling the fans of Detroit classless. They've said that Detroit fans should take a lesson from Babcock. Well, at least the Detroit fans that I know of haven't gotten into physical altercations with visiting fans during this series. (see picture below).
The Wings and Jackets obviously play close to one another's respective home towns. It makes it easy for fans of both teams to travel to the other teams home arena. Detroit fans know that it's normal to hear the boos and to be mocked by fans of the opposing team when they are on another team's turf- especially if it's during the post season. Same goes when the opposing teams fans show up at the Joe. I was at game 1 of this series and not surprisingly Columbus fans were booed and in some cases made a mockery of. This time of year it's always going to be a bit harsher However, to the best of my knowledge there wasn't one Jackets fan being touched, grabbed, or physically assaulted. Not once.
Giving fans of the opposing team some lip is condonable and it's to be expected this time of year. But to maul a random fan of the opposing team for trying to celebrate their team's victory? It's uncalled for and for that matter a classless act. It isn't uncommon for a Wings fan to throw an octopus on the ice in the opposing teams arena. The throwing of octopus is a tradition for Detroit and has been for 50 some odd years. It may not be what you want to see during your franchise's first ever playoff game. But Jackets fans should not have put their hands on this fan. If you want to boo him, curse him out, insult and mock him- by all means do it. That's your right as a fan. But to assault him physically!? Totally Classless.
It's no secret that every team has a few fans who are bad apples, but those fans don't make up the entire fan base. I understand that the people in this picture are merely a few of those bad seeds that Columbus has in their fan base. And in no way am I trying to say that all Jackets fans lack class. There are certainly some classy fans in Columbus. Be that as it may- none of them are in this picture. So we shall remind the bad apples that class and respect are two of hockey's long time traditions. And to the good fans of any and all teams that play this great sport: Be sure to continue to show those fans who are do lack class the correct way to act. With the same qualities that are hockey's foundation- pride, honor, and respect. With any luck those who lack these qualities will one day learn them.