Less than a week after Philadelphia Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds was involved in a banana throwing incident, he finds himself in the spotlight again, but this time he's not seen as the victim.
News broke yesterday that Sean Avery of the New York Rangers accused Simmonds of calling Avery a homophobic name. Since that time, it has sparked what is currently one of the most heated debates in the sports world, and for no good reason.
Look past your views on homosexuality or homosexual rights, because that is not what this is about. This is about everyday locker room talk.
Whether people want to admit it or not, if I had a nickel for every time somebody uttered a homophobic slur in the locker room or out on the ice, court, field, whatever, I would have enough money to pay both Simmond's and Avery's salaries for the next 100 years.
Vulgarity is a part of sports, and especially a part of hockey. Those of you who have played know what I'm talking about. You can go from Bruce Boudreau's rant on 24/7, to Sidney Crosby's not-so-nice words, to Sean Avery himself commenting on ex-girlfriend Elisha Cuthbert.
And that last video is rather amusing. Sean Avery, who is now complaining about being on the receiving end of a homophobic slur, just a few years ago was calling reporters over to purposely make coarse comments about an ex-girlfriend.
The only way you could really spell hypocritical any better is if Matt Cooke were to complain about somebody else playing dirty. Let's be honest, if you want to talk about genuine jackasses in the NHL, Sean Avery makes even Chris Pronger look like a saint.
Was Wayne Simmonds' homophobic slur a big deal?
Back to the topic at hand, homosexual slurs, even if you don't like them, are a very common thing, especially in sports. While that may be a bad thing, if you were to go and fine or suspend everybody who uses a slur, you'd have a league full of poor players currently serving suspensions.
The only reason this is different is because Avery chose to complain about something as petty as this, instead of being like every other player that goes about the game without notice.
Avery's current actions off-ice are the exact same ones he takes to the ice. He does something stupid to get a rise out of somebody, and then, when they go after him, he whines and cries as if he was the victim.
Don't believe it? I'll leave you with this video to support the point.
Are Wayne Simmonds' words to Sean Avery a big deal? You decide! Leave a comment below.
Jordan Matthews is an avid follower and fan of the NHL. For more coverage, you can become a fan of his on Bleacher Report or follow him on Twitter by clicking the follow button below.