Dear Maple Leafs fans,
I’m a Bruins fan and Bostonian. I’ve come here not to gloat but to offer words of comfort. I know, this probably sounds like B.S. but hear me out.
A lot of feelings and images surged through my brain when the horn sound and the red light flashed in OT last night.
Milan Lucic scoring the Bruins’ third goal with less than 90s second left in regulation and, defiant as ever, yelling obscenities as he embraced his line mates and tried to rally the troops.
The normally reserved Patrice Bergeron skating to center ice in jubilation after scoring the game-tying goal with less than a minute left, completing the Bruins’ furious rally.
Tuukka Rask, yet another big play, stonewalling Mattin Frattin’s breakaway with four minutes left, which would have iced the win for the Leafs.
And of course, Bergeron swooping in for the game winning goal in OT.
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One of the questions I’ve attempted to answer here is whether or not the people who Tweeted racist statements regarding the Capitals’ Joel Ward were in fact true Bruins fans and proper Bostonians. So far, after looking at 10 of the authors of those racist Tweets, it appears that most of them are what a sane and rational person would consider a Bruins fan (Editor’s Note: Part 2 of this series has been updated with new information).
The second question – where are these people from? — has produced more distressing but not entirely unexpected results. The collection so far includes Massachusetts towns like Plymouth, Attleboro, Danvers, Bolton and other regions well outside of Boston. In fact, we have Tweeters from New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Connecticut. So it seems that this is not just a Boston or even a Massachusetts problem but one that spans New England.
To be sure, not all of these Tweeters are from the area. As you’ll see below with Ryan Clifford, some folks had no affiliation whatsoever with the Bruins and just happened to be watching the game and suddenly felt compelled to blurt out racist comments regarding the outcome of a hockey game that really had no bearing on their lives. Which is just sad.
In any event, before we get to the next couple racist Tweets (due to time constraints, I was only able to get two for this installment), let’s turn our attention to one of the few Tweeters who issued an apology on their own.
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It occurred to me after posting part 1 of our ongoing series “Meet The Racist Bruins Fans” that I failed to lay out the ground rules for the Vendetta Ride. The rules are simple: if you Tweeted something racist regarding Joel Ward following Game 7 last week, you have two choices.
The first is to own up to your actions. Apologize. Face the music. Repent. Show remorse. Make amends. Be a better Bruins fan, and more importantly a better human being. Do all that, and you will be taken off the list. Like Mike Spiewak, a.k.a. @Spee_Durr.
Mike, a diehard Bruins fan, Tweeted something pretty awful – “You know the games over when the nigger scores. Goodbye bandwagon fans, see you all next April. #Bruins losing in #Game7 #breaksmyheart” – but to his credit he quickly apologized, deleted his remark, and then spent the next several days apologizing. And kept apologizing. And then for good measure, apologized some more. He took the heat. He owned his actions without making excuses or rationalizing them. We at BTBNL appreciate that. Mike is off the list.
Your second option is to ignore the fallout, hide in anonymity, and hunker down at the Winchester until this all blows over.
I’m here to tell you it won’t.
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It’s been a few days now since dozens of people posted racist Twitter comments about the Washington Capitals’ Joel Ward, and while most of these cowardly bigots predictably deleted their Twitter accounts in full retreat, a few folks have decided to keep their accounts active – and simply deleted said offensive Tweets hoping no one would notice.
Well, we did notice. And so did a lot of other people on Twitter.
Here are five of the racist Bruins fans. In an effort to determine if these people were “true Bruins fans” and actual Boston residents, I posed the question – are you a racist Bruins fan from Boston? And since these folks haven’t responded, I’ll have to make my best guesses. Here’s what I came up with.
Ethan Marshall, aka @GrizzlyMarshall
Meet Ethan. He issued the following Tweet after Game 7: “Fucking stupid arrogant, smelly, useless, waste of life, sad excuse for a NHL hockey playing N—–!!!!”
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