Fans removed from NHL after making disparaging comments at Black player
Carol Ozemhoya | OW Contributor | 2/19/2018, 12:12 p.m.
A group of fans was removed from a game in Chicago last week for remarks aimed at Washington Capitals player Devante Smith-Pelly, who is Black. The fans were shouting “basketball, basketball, basketball” at the NHL star, reported the Washington Post. Smith-Pelly was sitting in the penalty box during the game between the Washington Capitals and Chicago Blackhawks at United Center in Chicagp. He suddenly got up from his seat and approached the glass where fans nearby appeared to be shouting at him, according to a video by WGN, an affiliate of CNN. “There is absolutely no place in the game of hockey or in our country for racism and I think it is disgusting,” Capitals’ Coach Barry Trotz told reporters after the game. In a statement, the Chicago Blackhawks said the team was aware of the incident and apologized to Smith-Pelly and the Capitals. “The fans were immediately removed and we apologize to Smith-Pelly and the Washington Capitals organization. We are committed to providing an inclusive environment for everyone who attends our games and these actions will never be tolerated.”