There is an old joke about fan displeasure with a sports team which tells the story of two fans rushing to a home game of a team which is at the bottom of the standings.
In their haste to get into the arena/stadium the pair forget the two season tickets on the dash of their vehicle.
Upon their return they find six more pairs of tickets.
When fans are feeling bad about their team’s fortunes they can be very creative in showing where they stand.
There is of course the standard booing of almost everything the team does and that is normally accompanied by the less than sincere cheer when something on the positive side happens, no matter how small.
Many a letter has been written by fans pleading with management to make trades or fire coaches in order to right the wrongs.
We have all seen the pictures of fans wearing paper bags over their heads in shame.
These fans all have paid their dues in the form of tickets, jerseys, shirts, hats and all sorts of other forms of team merchandise so they have an inherent right to show how they feel when their team hits the skids.
But for the first time I can recall a fan has taken it to another level in a show of anger and frustration.
After the Edmonton Oilers were blanked by St. Louis, one fan decided a better use for his Oilers jersey was to help clean the ice surface and so he tore it off his back, tossing it onto the ice.
Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins called it a load of BS, which is ironic because that’s what the Oilers have been dishing out to their fans in the form of hockey but Eakins went further in his tirade.
He said the fan was a quitter, giving up on this team which had told ticket holders there was an improvement in store for this season. One which has mysteriously not materialized to this point.
Now was the fan justified in his display? Is it way out of bounds to toss away a jersey in protest? Should the coach have even acknowledged the act? Should he be tossed?
All good questions in my opinion and the Oilers would be well advised to find answers to what ails the team because when a fan does something like this, well it’s serious.
Oh yeah, one other question. Who got to keep the jersey?