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Blog Entry

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

Posted on: January 5, 2012 8:37 am
Edited on: January 5, 2012 9:46 am
 

By Brian Stubits

Fan-on-fan violence has hit hockey again and unfortunately for the good fans of the Philadelphia Flyers, it will further sully their overall bad reputation.

The Winter Classic was great. It was a fun event, turned out to be a really entertaining game and sure seemed to be a hit in Philadelphia to me. Despite the large numbers of New York Rangers fans I saw in attendance, there was nothing more than a few boos for the Blueshirt fans walking around the stadium before the game.

It was after the game that things got rough.

When you want a quick meal in South Philly, where do you go? Geno's Steaks, of course, one of the most renowned Philly cheesesteaks in the world. Naturally, there were fans of both the Rangers and Flyers waiting in line when a fight broke out. I'm not even sure if fight is the right word, more like an assault.

Here is video of the incident and Philadelphia Fox 29's story. (NSFW warning: there is some cursing.)

Apparently proud of their efforts, you can hear one of the attackers telling the Rangers fan that was just knocked cold to "go to [expletive deleted] sleep."

What was the cause of the disturbance, was it some postgame trash talk that heated everybody up? According to the Fox report, it was a situation where the Flyers fans bribed a local window washer to come and squirt the Rangers fans with water. That led to the hostilities boiling over and the above being the result.

One of the two Rangers fans that was assaulted is reportedly a police officer who was off duty. He was taken to a hospital in North New Jersey near his home, in the Woodbridge township. From the Star-Ledger:

"He took a severe beating," township spokesman John Hagerty said, adding that the officer was taken to a hospital, where he required stitches to close wounds. Hagerty refused to release the name of the officer, though News 12 New Jersey identified him as Neil Auricchio Jr., an Iraq war veteran.

Thanks to Facebook and SB Nation's Broad Street Hockey -- and one person's intelligence -- the Philadelphia police have a pretty good lead. Check out the information that Broad Street Hockey's Travis Hughes dug up and turned over to the police.

The dispute might not have been related to the game, I don't know, but what I can deduce is that these Rangers fans were picked partly because they were wearing blue instead of orange. It's stories like this that will continue to dissuade fans to wear opposing team colors to games, a sad development if I may say so.

This is the second fan violence incident in hockey in a little more than a week. You'll recall the story in San Jose of a 16-year-old girl being hit over the head and concussed at a Sharks game because she was wearing a Canucks jersey. In that case it was one hit and the accused attacker said it was an accident. There is no using that excuse in this melee.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Comments

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2012 3:09 pm
 

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

Agreed. I meant for that question to more hypothetical than directed at you. Fortunately, I've only had to deal with a few obnoxious Packers fans at a bar here in Austin a few years back and that's it. It's just unfortunate that many fans are outclassed by six year olds when it comes to sportsmanship, respect and public decorum.



Since: Mar 6, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 3:06 pm
 

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

It would be nice if Dexter was real and in Philly instead of Miami for this one.



Since: Mar 30, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 3:05 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Mar 6, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:55 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: May 13, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:55 pm
 

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

keepin' it real in filthadelphia.  real stupid.



Since: Sep 27, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:45 pm
 

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

I am not saying you shouldn't be able to go into another city and wear your colors.  You should be able to do that without a worry in the world.  When I wore my Eagles jersey in Orlando (We were in Disney by the way.  The story gets better) for the Eagles Bucs game, I had no idea I was putting my family in danger.  But guess what, there are plenty of knuckleheads that get crazy at these games.  It's sad to say, but I just don't think it's safe!  Not in Philly, not anywhere.  My best friend is a Giant's fan.  He comes to Philly to watch a game and sits quietly.  What he SHOULD be able to do and what he CAN DO SAFELY are two different things.

It isn't just Philadelphia!  I have been to sporting events all over the country and although only the beatings make the news, there are many problems that go on at games all over the country.  Write to the NFL and see if they are willing to give you the number of fans discharged from games at every stadium.  And after you have that (like they would ever publish that) realize that they are only the ejections and not the full list of harrassments that go un-reported.  Every game.  Every stadium.

My daughter is now 20 years old and if she was going to a Rangers game in a Flyers jersey I'd tell her she was nuts. 



Since: Jan 25, 2011
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:41 pm
 

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

5 on 2.  What a bunch of cowards.  I have been to numerous stadiums including Oakland and old Cleveland Municipal stadium wearing a Steeler jersey and I never had a problem.  I cheer for my team and don't talk smack to other fans.  I live in San Francisco and watched the 49er game in bar full 49er fans, cheered hard for my team and had no problems.  In fact several 49er fans said I was a good sport about it.  Like I told one guy, it's just a game and not life and death...unless you are stupid like these fools.  These guys are very lucky that off duty P.D. Ranger fan was not carrying.  He'd have been within his rights to shoot a least two of them dead.



Since: Dec 20, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:38 pm
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Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:33 pm
 

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

steve, sorry you had to deal with that, especially with your kids there. I disagree with your last sentence, though. That is the problem. Why can't one wear their team's apparel or cheer for them in an opposing stadium? They are in that city, supporting it's economy by spending money on hotels, food, drinks, shopping, etc. The problem is with these uneducated knuckle draggers that think they have to rep their city by being bullies because they have the numbers and can't handle their alcohol. 



Since: Aug 26, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2012 2:26 pm
 

Flyers fans attack Rangers fans after Classic

Well said. There are jerks everywhere.  
Glad you or your family were not harmed.  I had a slightly similar thing happen at a BWW where me and my 4 yr old were wearing Bengals jersey and a few Steelers fans were being jerks.  It's sad that people cant at least have class arould kids.  


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