I swear this wasn't me. One Bruins fan found himself on the wrong end of a Silly String bit courtesy of Tampa Bay Lightning mascot "ThunderBug" and decided to take things into his own hands. The fan shoves the mascot down to the ground and then gets two minutes for charging and a game-misconduct for his efforts amid the jeers of the Lightning faithful Tuesdsay at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. Check out Miss Tampa Bay Lightning (jersey, backward hat and glasses) leading the celebration. OK, maybe it wasn't her. Did she just hear that McDonald's had 2-for-1 Quarter Pounders after the game? Juvenile all the way around. The night was rough enough for Bruins fans as Tim Thomas gave up four goals in a 5-3 loss. We didn't need some doofus in a bug costume spraying string in anyone's face. The video was originally posted but since removed by Amazing Mascots. It was shared on Toucher and Rich's Facebook page Wednesday night.
First-degree Silly Stringing is not a crime in Florida and we don't know if this fan faced any legit criminal charges for his assault on "ThunderBug" after getting buzzed. For those of us who didn't pounce before getting bounced during Tuesday's game, the outcome was punishment enough.
There's a legit question and point here since the mascot is an employee of the Lightning and represents the team away from the ice at hundreds of public appearances. Silly String may be harmless and even helped U.S. and British troops in Iraq avoid tripwires and explosives. Pile-driving the mascot from behind is hardly the best response here. This fan should have at least gotten "ThunderBug" to turn around before going Shawn Thornton on his stuffed head. Perhaps an anger management class might be in order. Although I did my share of cursing after Tyler Seguin's unsportsmanlike penalty and Tampa's fourth goal.
Fans from opposing teams who nut up in their team's gear should not be bothered with this garbage from paid employees of the home team. Mascots at pro sporting events are a somewhat recent phenomenon (as in the last 20 years or so) and annoying to anyone over the age of eight. Of the four in Boston, only Blades is not a complete embarrassment. Expansion teams like the Lightning - and especially their cross-Bay brethren the Rays - have been propped up for years financially thanks to fans of their visitors. The Rays have a patent on this tripe with Boston fans. Of course, if it weren't for Boston and New York fans, that team would be lucky to reach six figures in annual attendance. Meanwhile, "ThunderBug" should have thanked this B's fan for shelling out $100 or so for his ticket - and probably another $50 on beer and chow - to help pay his salary. Not spray garbage on his face. There's nothing wrong with evenhanded, mild fan-on-fan fisticuffs in moderation, some little profane taunting or even the nightly scoreboard insults (as long as the kids are left alone). But this one crossed the line on both accounts.
Attention Patriots fans: looking for large fan groups and clubs located outside New England to mention in an upcoming post. If you know of any or are a member of one yourself - let me know. Thanks. As always, let us know what you think. Post your thoughts here, on our Obnoxious Boston Fan Facebook page or e-mail them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. And don't forget to follow us on Twitter @realOBF. Thanks for reading. Pass the clicker.
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