League insists that the action of one fan is not indicative of the entire sport.
Hockey, which has a reputation as one of the whitest sports in the world, has come under condemnation yet again when one of its few Black players had a banana peel thrown his way on the ice.
Yes, a banana peel.
During an exhibition game in London, Ontario, Canada, Philadelphia Flyers forward Wayne Simmonds was making his way toward the Detroit Red Wings goaltender when a fan from the stands threw a banana peel at him.
"I've never had a banana thrown at me before," Simmonds told reporters after the game. "I guess it's something I obviously have to deal with, being a Black player playing a predominantly white sport. I've grown a lot playing in this league and throughout my whole life. I'm not going to dwell on that. It's over with now."
Simmonds obviously would like nothing more than to put the whole ugly incident behind him, but the NHL has gone into full damage control. “The obviously stupid and ignorant action by one individual is in no way representative of our fans or the people of London, Ontario,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said in a released statement.
(Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)