The Flyers - and their fans - return to the scene of the crime tonight. The Flyers will try to stave off elimination in a do-or-die effort against the Capitals after being blown out of their own building, 6-1, Monday night.
The fans? Yes, they also will shuffle back into the House That Ed Built, just two days after disgracing the legacy of the team's late founder and owner by showering the ice with bracelets given out as part of a special celebration to honor Ed Snider.The embarrassing situation landed Philly fans in a familiar spot - in the national spotlight for less than sporting behavior.We used our editorial page today
to add our voices to those chiding such ugly behavior. We were joined by no less a voice than Snider's daughter, who tweeted that her father would have termed those who threw wristbands 'a disgrace.'I am wondering how many of the people walking sheepishly into the Wells Fargo Center tonight are the same people who took part in Monday night's debacle.And it also seems to be that part of what allows for such goonish behavior is the knowledge by fans that their actions for the most part will take place in relative anonymity.Which leads me to the question, why is that? Why not identify those who threw wristbands on the ice, make them public, and isolate them from the other 20,000 fans who were in the place and did not take part in such childish actions.I wonder if the Flyers have video covering the stands and if it captured people in the act. And I wonder if the Flyers would take action - such as revoking a season ticket or perhaps banning a person from the building, should they be identified as someone who threw a bracelet on the ice - and even some at opposing players.As a longtime Eagles season ticket holder who spent many a Sunday afternoon in the 700 Level of the Vet, I know all about Philly fans. I know all about our passion. I was there when Wilbert went off tackle. I was in the stadium when Phillies fans literally got inside Burt Hooton's head and booed him off the mound.But I've also seen more than my share of things I wish I hadn't.It's one of the reasons, to this day, I tell people it is not a great idea to wear gear of the opposing team to Philly sports events. I don't know what the answer is. I'm pretty sure alcohol plays a big role in a lot of these incidents. And there are those who are going to abuse the 'atmosphere' at the sports complex hours before a big event.But I think identifying people who are causing problems, and banning them from the arenas, might be a start.