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Just returned from the Verizon Center for Game 5 Flyers at Caps. I have some problems with the way people treat other fans at sporting events. I grew up in Philadelphia and have watched the Flyers, Phillies and Eagles since I was 5 years old in 1970. I am a lifetime fan and have watched all these teams through thick and thin.

I went to the game today in DC and watched as fans from both sides treated each other like dirt. Why can't fans just cheer for their team. I counted at least 25 times where the Caps fans chanted "Flyers Suck" and the cheers were not directed to the play on the ice, but to the fans in the seats. This was almost equal to the number of times they chanted Lets Go Caps.

I was physically challenged in the rest room due to the color of my jersey. While celebrating the Prospal goal and just slapping hands with my friends I was hit with a "thunder stick" and when I turned to hand it to the child behind me that I thought dropped it, I watched as the guy two rows back threw an empty cup at me. What the hell? After reading the Washington Post last week, I expected Disney on Ice. He then yelled at me that if I stood up again he would "plant my @ss back in the seat" until his girlfriend calmed him down.

However the attitudes were not limited to just the home town folks. I watched two moron Flyer fans stand in the way of the Caps fans and not let them watch the game during a Caps powerplay. As the usher came down they sat, as he walked back they stood up again. This went on for the last 25 minutes of the game. The ushers should have escorted these morons out on the 2nd trip to their seats.

What happened to just enjoying your team and your friends. The players on the ice don't hate each other. They run the guy through the boards and then show up at a charity golf tournament in 6 weeks and have a great time together. They sign things and give to different charities. Recently when a family friend was holding an auction to raise money for his sick granddaughter, the Flyers sent items including a signed picture and puck from Alexander Ovechkin. A classy move.

As to the Washington Post article again, the video screen at the Verizon Center shows hits where guys get run through the wall, Donald Brashear fighting and knocking somebody out cold. As we left the arena and were walking to our car behind a nice guy and his grandson (all decked out in Caps red) the three of us were screamed repeated obscenities about the color of our jerseys. This poor little 5 year old at a playoff game does not need to hear that kind of crap.

I watched a video of the Flyers fans leaving game 4 (it was posted by ladynic on Hockeybuzz). All you can see is the fans chanting "Lets Go Flyers". All we heard today was "Flyers Suck" - not very classy.

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Notes from the Game Today:

*The Caps came out on fire and really outplayed the Flyers for the first 30 minutes of the game. The Flyers seemed to take control of the last half of the game.

*Semin has a wicked wrist shot and displayed it today on the goal in the 3rd period. What a shot! That thing was a missile!!

*The Caps did a great job of line matching today - you can really watch this live - and kept AO away from Carter's line for the most part.

*Hatcher played really well. I thought he was great even before he scored the goal.

*Coburn can really skate. He started after Federov and beat him down the ice. That was impressive. Also Federov had his arm around him and dragged him down. Sorry Caps fan, it was a grab.

*Ovechkin could have scored a pretty goal in the 1st period if he wasn't trying to draw a penalty by throwing his hands up. I never thought I would see him diving to draw penalties. He beat the defense on the powerplay and instead of finishing dove. The Caps scored right after that on a nice 5 on 3 goal.

*The Federov goal at the start of the 2nd period was a direct result of a great line change by the Caps. Carter's line started the period and was still on ice at 90 seconds into the period. The Caps had changed and got the AO line out as the Carter unit was totally winded.

*I am not sure why the fans are booing Briere. If I were him that would really make me feel great about my performance.

*Does anyone else hate these composite sticks. We counted at least 12 broken sticks today during the play. It is ridiculous. If I coached the team, all of my defensemen and penalty killers would use wood sticks only. By the way at the end of the game as Briere took the last shot that was weak on net, as he skated away his blade was broken.
Filed Under:   Flyers   Capitals   Playoffs   NHL  
April 19, 2008 9:41 PM ET | Delete
I wont comment about the game itself, because we obviously have a differing of opinions about OV "diving", and others.But I've heard some stories about fans in both stadiums and its absolutely ridicolous. Some moron Flyers fans actually came onto our blog and threatened any Caps fans to come to Wach. The problem isnt the majority, Ive been to a ton of away games and 98% are great people, all class. Just the 2% of drunk, idiot tough guys that feel invisible with 18000 fans around them.
April 19, 2008 9:53 PM ET | Delete
That's really sad. There's always going to be goofballs, but if these incidents are as widespread as you say they are, that's a real shame. Any activities like that would be absolutely not tolerated in Buffalo's HSBC Arena. The ushers are strict there and never afraid to throw a goon out of the place. Here's hoping we don't hear many stories like this the rest of these NHL playoffs...
April 19, 2008 10:05 PM ET | Delete
Most fans are respectful of one another, so hearing about incidents like this is really a sad commentary on those people. I know that in Nashville, if you're respectful of the fact that you're in our house and don't try to antagonize the home crowd, you're perfectly welcome in the building. In fact, we'll wish you well and hope you have a good time at the game. However, there are certain fans that consistently seem to show a lack of class and respect when they're the road team.Red Wing FansBlues FansSabres FansI've experienced Red Wing fans in several cities, and they're just as obnoxious in every city, not just Nashville. The fact that there are several of them acting like idiots really gives a bad name and reputation to the ones that show a modicum of respect.Blues fans are similar. They like to taunt and harass the home crowd then wonder why people aren't nice to them. The funny thing is, when you go to St. Louis they're as nice as can be.I've never been to a game in Buffalo, so I can't speak to the fans there, however, the ones that I've seen at the arena, EVERY TIME we play them are rude, obnoxious and drunk.Everyone else just seems to come in and have a good time, win or lose.D
April 19, 2008 10:08 PM ET | Delete
Sabres fans that travel (or live in the south and go to the games) are obnoxious and rude - ignore them. don't represent us a whole! Come to a game in Buffalo some time...some fun taunting sometimes, but total respect. It's a great place to see a hockey game - you'll love the experience.
April 19, 2008 10:10 PM ET | Delete
I imagine I would. During the Preds first five years I shared season tickets with two of my friends from Buffalo. They're great people. Unfortunately, the people we see here really are idiots. Buffalo seems like a fun place to watch a game. Btw, I hate that this particular blog area doesn't allow you to format your posts. They're all mishmashed together and look horrible.
April 19, 2008 10:40 PM ET | Delete
yeah i agree about the formatting. anyway, best of luck tomorrow against Detroit! i'm pulling for you guys
April 19, 2008 10:46 PM ET | Delete
I went to a game in Nashville 2 years back. Great town, great arena and great fans. Anyone that wants to travel and watch a road game - I say go to Nashville. Not only are the arena and fans great, but the area around the rink is fabulous. Tons of little pubs with live music of all kinds! The only place besides Nashville that was an absolute joy was Toronto. I have been to all Eastern Conference arenas except Montreal (next on my list) and Miami.
April 19, 2008 11:34 PM ET | Delete
I was at the game today as well. I agree totally about the garbage that goes on between fans, it really detracts from the enjoyment of the game. I will only take my kids to regular season, non-rivalry type games in order to avoid dealing with the nonsense. My brother was at both games at the Wach and detailed similar stories to what your experience was at Verizon.
April 20, 2008 9:07 AM ET | Delete
I do hate the composite sticks. I always see sticks break on point shots.
April 20, 2008 10:32 AM ET | Delete
that is aweful. I attending a Flyers game earlier this year at the Verizon center and had no problems. Infact about a third of the arena was Flyers fans. I will say the Flyers fans really heckled the caps fans that attended on Thursday night to a point that I found the people doing it extremely rude. We will see what happens tomorrow. GO Flyers!
April 20, 2008 9:20 PM ET | Delete
There is so much a lack of respect it makes me sick, check this out from Tuesday night 1-0 game in Boston. Nobody deserves this I dont care what type of jersey they are wearing http://www.bostonherald.com/news/opinion/columnists//view.bg?articleid=1087970
April 21, 2008 4:26 PM ET | Delete
Phigment: I agree with you, but were was this opinion when I called out Philly fans as classless for chanting a**hole during game 2? You seemed ok with it then.
April 21, 2008 5:15 PM ET | Delete
It sucks that there is that group of people. I AM NOT BLAMING THE VICTIM HERE. I understand how you can be pissed off at someone. I was in Philly for a game where the Rangers came back and won in overtime. After the game a guy in a Rangers jersey was walking around the concourse screaming let's go Rangers. I was mad and wanted to choke him, but I have control. I saw him a few minutes later getting beat up in the stairwell. There is always going to be the idiots on both sides who can't hold back. Again, I am not blaming the victim, but don't instigate. Also rwrusso, there is a difference between speaking and physical violence. Remember the old sticks and stones rhyme as a kid. There is a part that hurts and a part that doesn't. We DO NOT have the right as people to NOT have our feelings hurt, everyone is entitled to say what they please. When you physically hurt someone or threaten them with bodily harm, that is the problem. I have been to several rinks in my Flyers jersey over the years, and only one person told me to shut up when I cheering after a goal. Again, the 98% - 2%.
April 22, 2008 1:15 PM ET | Delete
szandor, you're right. There is a difference between physical violence and just words. Phigment however is also using non-violent examples such as "Flyers suck" chants and blocking the view of other fans. This all falls under poor sportsmanship amongst fans. As you also say, correctly, it's that 2% who causes the problem. As for instigating? Please. Make up your mind. Either it's only words and that Ranger fan wasn't hurting anyone's feelings, or he was instigating that 2%. You are blaming the victim.
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