What does a wristband and Philadelphia Flyers owner Ed Snider have in common? Well, our story begins as a tragedy. On April 11, 2016, Flyers owner Ed Snider had passed away after a battle with bladder cancer. Despite being announced cancer-free in late 2014, the bladder cancer would return a year and a half later and unfortunately won the battle against Snider.
The Flyers paid tribute to Snider in the 2015-16 season by wearing a black patch on their jersey with Snider’s signature. However, there would be one more tribute to Snider, but this tribute would become such disgrace thanks to the Flyers fans.
What do I mean?
The Wristbands, Tribute, and the Game
When the Flyers reached the playoffs that season, they played against the Washington Capitals in the first round. After losing the first two games, the Flyers returned to back to Philadelphia to try and win at home. When Flyers fans went to that game, they received wristbands when they went to their seats. The wristbands would light up as soon as the Flyers made their entrance on the ice. A tribute video played featuring Snider’s history with the Flyers set to the song “Souvenir” by Billy Joel. While the video tribute went over well, it’s what happened during the game that causes this debacle.
The Flyers jumped out to a lead very early on thanks to Michael Raffl burying a rebound from a Brandon Manning shot. However, that would be the only goal that came from Flyers in this game. The main reason for the Capitals win was due to their power-play unit. Alexander Ovechkin scored two power-play goals, along with goals by Evgeny Kuznetsov, Marcus Johansson, Jay Beagle, and John Carlson. The Capitals won the game 6-1.
So, where and how do the fans start throwing the wristbands?
The Throwing of The Wristbands
When the game was 4-1 in the 3rd period with under 8 minutes to go, Dmitry Orlov went to retrieve a puck in the Flyers zone. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare then checked Orlov from behind. The hit then led to a scrum by both teams. Fights began to form with Radko Gudas fighting Andre Burakovsky.
While the players were fighting, Flyers fans began to throw the wristbands on the ice.
As Dmitry Orlov made his way back to the Capitals bench, more wristbands started coming down onto the ice. One wristband even hit Orlov while he was getting patched up by the trainer. When Alex Ovechkin and Wayne Simmonds tried to signal the crowd to stop, but no one listened. It got so bad that Flyers public address announcer, Lou Nolan, told the crowd to stop throwing the wrist bands and to have some class. It took a little while for the wristbands to get off the ice, but eventually, play continued.
Pierre-Edouard Bellemare did get a 5-minute penalty for a hit from behind plus a 10 minute game misconduct. The series ended in six games with the Capitals winning and advancing to the second round.
What can everyone learn from this experience?
There is one thing everyone can learn from this experience. It’s always tough when the owner of a franchise passes away. It’s also always nice to pay tribute. When you’re losing an important game, especially in the playoffs, it’s never nice to take an item that was given to you and chuck it onto the ice. It shows that you are disgracing the owner of your franchise, and that is something that many people should think about.
Next time just keep the wristband in your hand and think about the owner. It’s so much better than what these Flyers fans did.
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