Fans removed from game for remarks aimed at black Washington Capitals player

22 February 2018, 12:56 | Andres Norman

Blackhawks fans removed from game for yelling 'basketball!' at Devante Smith-Pelly, Capitals' African-American forward

Blackhawks Fans Ejected For Alleged Racist Taunts At Opposing Player

Washington Capitals hockey player Devante Smith-Pelly blasted the "disgusting" racist chant directed at him during an NHL game in Chicago Saturday night that led to the ejection of several fans.

Brown saw where four spectators were escorted out of United Center after taunting Smith-Pelly with chants of "basketball, basketball, basketball" as the winger sat in the penalty box after a fight with the Blackhawks' Connor Murphy. A game official reportedly notified security, and the fans were removed from the arena. It's just a few ignorant people being idiots, that's it. ...

Racist fans are in every sport, but the National Hockey League, which has just 30 Black players, has a persistent problem. "We're at a time we can't brush it under the rug". He also has played for Anaheim, Montreal and New Jersey.

"We've had this conversation before", said Smith-Pelly, who is from Toronto.

In the words of Martin Luther King Jr., "I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality..."

Blackhawks Fans Ejected For Alleged Racist Taunts At Opposing Player
Barry Trotz calls fans' racist taunts at Devante Smith-Pelly 'disgusting'

It is times like these where sometimes I like to think Martin Lurther King Jr's dream has, in some capacity, come through. Whether it happens to Devante Smith-Pelly or a random person on the street, you should be comfortable in your own skin and gender and nationality or religion, your beliefs.

February is Hockey Is For Everyone month in the NHL, a league-wide initiative to encourage inclusiveness for fans and players of all backgrounds, races, religions and sexual orientations.

"For the 22,000 people in Chicago at the game last night, there were a lot, a lot, a lot of good people", Trotz said.

The slur suggested that Smith-Pelly should be playing basketball, a sport dominated by Black athletes. You have to start calling people out, making sure people see other people's true colors. "You don't really have anyone", Smith-Pelly told the Star. This next stat just shows that the Hawks are nearly unbeatable when the Toews/Kane combo is playing at a high level. "You'd think there'd be some sort of change or progression but we're still working toward it I guess, and we're going to keep working toward it".

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