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NHL Tells Vancouver’s “Green Men” to Tone it Down

The National Hockey League has long struggled with image problems. The nature of the sport is partly to blame, I suppose, but the bland, mind-numbingly traditionalist stance of its leaders can’t help. Case in point: the NHL has asked Vancouver’s “Green Men” to tone down their act.

The “Green Men,” for those who may still be uninitiated, are two fans who attend Canucks games clad in green spandex bodysuits. They’ve been doing this since late 2009. The problem is that the two, Sully and Force apparently, sit by the penalty box. When a player from the opposing team winds up in the penalty box, the “Green Men” get into it by trying to distract and taunt the unfortunate soul sitting in the  booth. This has included hammering on the glass and doing rather creative handstands. In a recent playoff game, it’s also included hoisting up a cardboard cut-out of Carrie Underwood in a Canucks jersey.

Their antics have produced some rather comical results, of course. But that’s apparently a big no-no in today’s NHL and Gary Bettman’s cronies have asked the pair to settle down. A complaint was registered with the league, but nobody seems to know who produced it.

In response to the bitterness, the NHL has asked the “Green Men” to stop touching the glass. Also, they must put the kibosh on the handstands.

The “Green Men” are a pair of paying fans, remember, and they have as much a right as any to enjoy the game. If the opposition is rattled or distracted by their antics, so much the better. They don’t touch the players and fans in Rogers Arena universally seem to love Sully and Force, so what gives?

Now sure, perhaps the whole handstands thing is to be expected. Rogers Arena may object to fans doing them on seats or boards or whatever. That’s understandable, if not a bit bizarre.

But touching the glass? Since when are fans, especially those in the front rows, forbidden from touching the glass? Go to any hockey game and you’ll hear and see a veritable chorus of glass-pounding peeps making their feelings known.

“Someone through the NHL told us that we were no longer allowed to touch the glass,” said one of the “Green Men.” “This is the first complaint we’ve ever heard of. The Canucks love us. We haven’t done anything wrong. We pay full price, and we have a little fun while supporting our team.”

Thank goodness the NHL is cracking down on what’s important.


One Response to “NHL Tells Vancouver’s “Green Men” to Tone it Down”

  1. I guess there antics might interrupt a potential business deal by two fans that don’t even understand the game and only got tickets as part of a business bribe.
    This modern day NHL is slowly becoming a sham, that might take years to fix and get right.
    First it’s Bettman changing all the teams and their locations, then he corrupts the game by changing all the rules
    effecting all the players, coaches and referees and finally he wants fans to change their behavior.
    Well it is clearly time if the league won’t take a stand maybe the one thing that keeps it going the fans need to step and make the difference.
    Maybe as many people as possible should behave like the green man, let loose and force Bettman to shut his fat cat mouth.
    I am sick of his arrogance!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Oh well I guess all I can say is what will the moron do next.

    Posted by Mjb4fly | May 4, 2011, 8:13 pm

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