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NHL: In Defence of the Underfire Vancouver Canucks Fans

The actions by a minority of Canucks' fans has caused controversy the world over
The actions by a minority of Canucks' fans has caused controversy the world overElsa/Getty Images
James WalkerAnalyst IJune 16, 2011

It is a twist of fate that is all too familiar with many a sports fan, the flagship game for their most cherished sport is thrown into disrepute by activities outside of the arena.

Word of the rioting Canucks fans has gone viral across the Internet with the thug-like behaviour from a minority of Vancouver fans dominating news headlines. News of Boston’s triumph has become a subplot as a city fell into dissent and anarchy following Vancouver’s defeat on home soil.

The story has broken into news reports in countries such as the United Kingdom—countries that do not have a large hockey fan base, if any at all. Instead of people talking about an enthralling seven game series the NHL has gained infamy due to the actions of a small proportion of its fan base.

While such events are shocking, particularly in a city such as Vancouver, it is all too easy to jump to conclusions and attack an entire fan base. Hockey fans throughout North America have expressed their discontent towards Canucks fans, and the franchise as a whole. It is almost as if people enjoy being offended by acts like this. People like to point their fingers at other people and claim moral superiority.

As a matter of fact the people most appalled by the actions of a minority of fans are fellow Canucks fans, the citizens of Vancouver and British Columbia itself. No one wants to have their team thrown into disrepute. No civilian wants their city to be trashed by a small group of hooligans.

The actions of a small group of Canucks fans are not representative of an entire franchise, nor are they an accurate account of what went on and what is being done now. A Facebook group put together by a Canucks fan has already attracted more than 12,500 fans to get together and clean up the city. A staggering accumulation of volunteers in less than twelve hours after the events that shocked the hockey community.

These are the real Canucks. They love their city, love their club, love their community and hate the small number of fans who have tarnished their reputations. The 12,500 plus volunteers do not deserve to be categorised in the same way the thugs are yet it seems like the entire world has teamed up against them, all too happy to claim moral superiority.

Another group has been set up to help catch the hooligans who decided to through a mass brawl on the streets of VanCity. More than 28,000 people have signed up and I would personally encourage anyone else who knows anyone involved to help identify the criminals involved.

What happened in Vancouver is a disgrace but instead of paying attention to the criminals that tarnished a great city; let’s give credit to the good people who are giving their own time to amend a crime that was not their doing.

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