Blackhawks Fans (Allegedly) Chant "Basketball" At Black Capitals Player In Penalty Box

Hope Soto
February 19, 2018

Multiple fans were ejected at tonight's Blackhawks-Capitals game in Chicago. Smith-Pelly is black.

The Blackhawks did issue a statement, calling the comments directed toward Smith-Pelly "harmful".

Capitals coach Barry Trotz reiterated his post-game comments by saying there's no place for racism in hockey or the country. "You'd think there would 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". There's no place for it.

"Athletes in our country don't deserve that", Trotz added.

Artem Anisimov, Nick Schmaltz and Alex DeBrincat also scored Blackhawk goals as Chicago scored three apiece in the first and second periods.

Smith-Pelly, who had 12:50 of ice time Saturday, heard the taunt and got up to confront one fan through the glass but was quickly turned around by the penalty box attendant.

Smith-Pelly reportedly responded to the fans, although what he said was uncertain. The organization apologized, and reaffirmed their stance that they are working towards an "inclusive environment for everyone" and that "these actions will never be tolerated".

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"The League fully supports the actions taken by the United Center and the Blackhawks to eject the offenders and would expect the same response to any similarly unacceptable behavior at any of our arenas", the statement continued. Security officers at the United Center were alerted and the four spectators were removed from the building. It's just a few ignorant people being idiots.

The 25-year-old Canadian is in his first season with the Capitals.

Assistant captain Brooks Orpik said: "I wish I could say it's surprising but it's probably not all that surprising". He was coming off the ice and heard a fan scream, "Go back to playing basketball". He has 40 goals and 53 assists in 320 regular-season games with in seven seasons with Anaheim, Montreal, New Jersey and the Capitals.

The NHL has roughly 30 black players, the Tribune reported.

Devante Smith-Pelly did not make a statement following his team's 7-1 loss.


This rumor just won't go away.I am hearing JvR is NOT in this deal, "at least directly". "You don't really have anyone".

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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