Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 09/23/11 at 10:18 AM ET
from Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News,
Often as the only black player on his team, growing up in Scarborough, Ontario, Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds dealt with his fair share of racial slurs on the ice as he climbed the hockey ladder.
Few experiences could have prepared him for what happened on Thursday night, as a fan in the John Labatt Centre threw a banana peel at Simmonds as he skated in alone on a shootout attempt during a 4-3 loss to the Detroit Red Wings.
“I caught it from the side of my eye,” Simmonds said. “It was a banana. Hopefully, that wasn’t directed towards me being black.
“Because if it was, that’s just somebody being ignorant.”
added 8:34am, from the CP at TSN,
Kevin Weekes, a former NHL goaltender and current CBC colour commentator who is black, expressed his disgust over the incident on his Twitter account.
“For those that asked: I’m extremely disappointed with what happened to Wayne Simmonds tonight in London Ont,” he posted. “We’ve taken HUGE steps to grow the game of hockey,as I speak Willie O’Ree and I are in D.C attending the Black Congressional Caucus on behalf of the NHL & ironically this takes place.”
NEW YORK (Sept. 23, 2011)—Gary Bettman, Commissioner of the National Hockey League, today released the following statement regarding an incident at Thursday night’s pre-season game between the Detroit Red Wings and Philadelphia Flyers in London, Ontario:
“We have millions of great fans who show tremendous respect for our players and for the game. The obviously stupid and ignorant action by one individual is in no way representative of our fans or the people of London, Ontario.”
added 10:58am, via MetroNews,
“As Mayor, and on behalf of Londoners, I am sending an apology to Wayne Simmonds and the Philadelphia Flyers organization regarding the incident at last night’s exhibition game,” the statement reads. “It was a stupid and mindless act by a single individual, however it reflects badly on our entire community. London is a diverse and welcoming city and we like it that way.”
added 1:46pm, Not a very good video, but a fan uploaded one to YouTube which you can watch below.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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