Some action has consequences and so do words. On Saturday night in Chicago, Devante Smith-Pelly headed to the penalty box. While in the box, four fans yelled racial slurs at Smith-Pelly, chanting “basketball, basketball, basketball”. Those fans were quickly ejected from the game by arena security. On Monday afternoon, the Blackhawks contacted the fans and told them they were no longer welcome back. This news was reported first by Mark Lazerus, a Blackhawks beat writer for the Chicago Sun-Times.
Blackhawks have contacted the ejected fans from Saturday night and told them they are banned from future games. Via a team spokesperson: “Racist comments and other inappropriate behavior are not tolerated by the Chicago Blackhawks.”
— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) February 19, 2018
“There’s absolutely no place in the game of hockey or our country for racism. I think it’s disgusting and there’s no place for it. Athletes in our country don’t deserve that. It just shows ignorance,” Trotz told the media Saturday night.
After Sunday’s practice, Smith-Pelly spoke with the media for the first time since the incident. He said, “It’s sad that it’s 2018 and we’re still talking about the same thing over and over. It’s sad that athletes like myself 30, 40 years ago were standing in the same spot saying the same thing.”
“It’s so disgusting, as DSP mentioned, that in 2018 we’re talking about this…. I certainly don’t understand taking a shot at someone because of the color of their skin and I hope those fans who are kicked out are identified and never spend another second inside a hockey rink or a sports arena,” said NBC Sports Washington’s Michael Jenkins prior to the Capitals game Monday afternoon against the Sabres on Caps Faceoff.
By Michael Marzzacco