STOP THROWING JERSEYS

leafsjersey

Another Leafs game, another jersey tossed onto the ice. At this point it’s more regular than my morning bowel movements. The Leafs are beginning another late season collapse, they’re on the verge of missing the playoffs for the 9th time in 10 years, and Leaf fans are more fed up than ever before. 

I get that. BUT FOR THE LOVE OF GORD STOP THROWING YOUR DAMN JERSEYS ON THE ICE!! 

I’m not going to sit here and wax poetic about the sanctity of the sweater, or how the logo is some kind of sacred object that must be treated with nothing but reverence and respect. For better or worse the Toronto Maple Leafs and every other NHL team are businesses. To me the Maple Leaf logo is no different than the golden arches or the Pepsi symbol. 

My problem with throwing jerseys on the ice is it’s predicated on this idea that coaches/management/ownership have NO CLUE that the team is doing poorly and that the fans are unhappy. Or that they’re sitting there, kicking their feet up onto a pile of money and laughing at the plebs for continually asking for more. Actually, you know what I can see Leiweke and Tanenbaum doing that because they seem like they’re that type of eccentric rich guy. 

But there’s no way I believe that either of those guys, or Shanahan or Nonis are sitting there and being perfectly content with running a mediocre to terrible hockey team. 

Shanny

In order to just make the NHL in the first place you have to be psychotically competitive and driven. Shanahan fought BOB PROBERT for Gord’s sake, so you know that’s a guy who will literally do whatever it takes to win. There is no scenario in which I can see him being totally fine with running a crappy hockey team. I guarantee you that if he could trade rosters with the Blackhawks he would have done it yesterday, but contrary to what a lot of hockey fans like to believe teams don’t just become great overnight. It takes savvy, patience and catching lightning in a bottle, and so far the Leafs are still in the basement trying to remember where they left that bottle back in 67. 

leiweke

And does no one remember Tim Leiweke’s first press conference where basically the first words out of his mouth were “Stanley Cup Parade Route”? I’m sure some of that was just typical lip service to the fans that all these guys have to do, but again I can’t fathom him being happy with anything less than at least challenging for the cup. Of course the Leafs are an incredibly sound investment — they basically just print their own money at this point. But these guys buy sports franchises because they’ve already made a fortune elsewhere. The professional sports ownership club is a Linus measuring contest, and the more rings you can hang off it the better. None of those guys sit around drinking overpriced scotch and are all “We missed the playoffs again and had another disappointing season. But look at this gigantic pile of money! EVERYTHING IS AWESOME!” They want to own a winner just as much as the fans want to cheer for one.  

And as far as I’m concerned, when you throw a jersey onto the ice you also look like a moron. 

When you get in an argument with your wife/girlfriend/boyfriend/dog do you grab the nearest thing that’s within arms reach and hurl it against the ground? No. You know who throws things when they get temperamental? Babies. You look like a god damn baby when you drunkenly hurl your $300 piece of merchandise on the ice. 

AND IT DOESN’T DO A DAMN THING! 

donothing

This is, what, like the 30th jersey that’s been tossed on the ice during a Leafs game over the last 12 months or so? And it’s caused exactly how much change in the organization? The Leafs have won how many more games? If you answered zero to either of those questions you are correct! 

I mean, this is a fairly new phenomena still, so perhaps we just haven’t hit the correct number yet? Maybe 50 jerseys being thrown is the magical number to make hockey teams good? Maybe 100? Only time will tell but if I were a betting man I would say that number doesn’t exist. 

Look, don’t listen to me as I’m just some moron with a computer and way too big of a platform to spout my rhetoric. Throw all the jerseys on the ice you want. What do I care how you decide to waste your money? But just know that every time you do I will be lurking in the shadows, mocking you, and thinking you are a grade A moron. And all you’ll be left with is a team that is still garbage, and hard nipples due to having to walk back to your car shirtless. And trust me Leaf fans, NO ONE wants to see your sad man-boobs. 

  • moosewacker

    I would rather throw a leafs Jersey on the ice with the Leafs fan still attached.

    At least the Oiler Jersey attention got some attention for how pissed off fans are. It has been the apposite of how a Red Wing fans throws an Octopus.

  • YFC Prez

    I only have 1 oilers jersey, my #94 that I bought fifteen years ago at Rexall, well Sky Reach centre back then.

    And the oilers are not going to get it. I’m keeping that thing it cost me just shy of 200$ ! I don’t care how mad I get , how faded the signature gets or how much it fits me more and more like a t-shirt and less like a jersey every year.

    I would never throw that kind of money away. I don’t even like throwing my hat after a hatty. Good thing those don’t happen very often anymore.

  • mr_nihilism

    If people want to toss an expensive jersey onto the ice out of frustration I believe that to be their prerogative. Although instead of throwing it away for nothing, why not try and eBay/kijiji it instead? Make lemonade out of lemons.

  • Zarny

    I say throw all the jerseys you want, but only when there is a stoppage in play. There is no need to endanger a player / official’s safety when they are 100% focused on the game during play.

    Other option is to stop supporting the team! Do not buy tickets or any merchandise related to the team! Empty seats and reduced revenue will hit the bottom line. Watch the game from home or your favorite watering home instead.

    I feel for Oilers and Leafs fans with what has been endured over the last decade. Tossing a jersey on the ice is a last resort decision to voice your displeasure with the product on the ice and is well justified when done during stoppage.

    Wait, did I say players 100% focused on the game during play? Both teams have numerous guys that seem to be more focused on the party after the game.

  • The ultimate way to make a jersey tossing point would be if we had a bunch of Kevin Lowe jerseys to toss.

    Most of the anger is directed towards management, so that would hold a lot more meaning, that your giving up on certain people, not the team.

    • What kind o ill tempered crazy strong babies are you hanging out with? And why are you hanging out with babies in the first place?

      Calling people babies, is for babies. Are you a baby? How did you learn to type hyper intelligent baby? Also, you are the worst kind of baby, the baby that hates its own kind. You need baby solidarity counseling…

      … baby.

  • Zarny

    Throwing a jersey is a non violent form of protest. I would much rather fans throw jerseys rather than hurl gross insults at the team as they are walking to thier locker room.

    In this society we should be fine with non violent protest. Throw your jersey during stoppages of play if you want to. If you feel better after throwing it, good for you.

    It’s better than being sheep.

  • Congo Powerarm

    Try looking at this from the angle of the fan. Tossing the jersey allows fans to mark their disgust on national television. It’s a larger platform.

  • billythebullet

    Fans have more power then they think. Toss a jersey might not do much but get you a fine, but imo, if you are tired of watching player x mail it every night, boo them every time they touch the puck. In fact I think Oilers fans have done this before? Was it Poti? Or was it Arnott? Comrie maybe? I forget. Jersey tossing sounds expensive. But booing is free.

  • The Last Big Bear

    If Katz gave 1/10th of a **** about Oilers fans, he would have fired every single person in the organization (except Joey Moss) years ago.

    Instead he threatened to move the team to Seattle if the city of Edmonton didn’t give to him hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money.

    The Oilers are equal parts cash cow, and vanity project.

    He may be a bit upset about losing, but clearly not enough to stop treating the team like an old boys club for retired Oilers ‘Glory Years’ players.

    So if you want owners to start giving a **** about the fans? Hit them where it hurts.

    In the vanity.

    I say make it RAIN jerseys.

  • Eberle4MVP

    Considering Katz had Mark Spector removed from a SNET broadcast a couple days after Spector pointed out that the fans are starting to rebel by staying home, not buying merchandise, etc… there is a disconnect between the owner and the fans in Edmonton. If Katz doesn’t want to hear anything bad about his team from the media, imagine what it is like inside the organization!

    Till Lowe is fired, free those jerseys and make them fly.

  • Eberle4MVP

    I couldnt care less if fans want to show their displeasure with the team and organization by tossing the jerseys. They paid and it is their right.

    My only fear is that the NHL will see how frequent this happens, and will change the rules to install mesh netting all the way around the rink to prevent this from happening again.

    And all the loyal fans suffer because of it. TV broadcasts would really suffer!

  • Eberle4MVP

    I’m not sure if given the fact that the season is just past the 1/2 way mark a “late” season collapse. If there is one Team I don’t want to be in the Playoffs it’s TML. Let them collapse in Pre-Season and throw more Jerseys.

  • FlareKnight

    I honestly only have an issue with it if it’s during play. That is dangerous and stupid. But during an intermission, timeout, tv break, etc I don’t care. It’s no more or less effective on sending a message than booing (which we are fine with) nor disruptive than throwing hats on the ice for a hat trick.

    The fact this is a story annoys the heck out of me. This team has become the most mediocre mess we’ve seen in a long time. People have grown up never knowing the Leafs as anything but mediocre. But a couple people out of thousands at a game throwing a jersey is news worthy!?

    Right now people have already wasted a lot of money buying tickets to horrible performances. They aren’t losing anything of serious value in comparison by throwing a jersey.

    It’s not very effective, but I honestly don’t think it’s worth more than a minor note about.

  • Ed Hod

    So I can throw hats on the ice but not jerseys.?

    Would they charge people if they threw hats on the ice when there wasn’t a hat trick?

    Maybe people should only throw hats in spite just to avoid getting a charge.

    • Deported to Ottawa

      Agreed. We have to be grown up and patient at work with the boss and fellow employees…we have to be grown up and patient at home with the wife and kids…we have to be grown up and patient whenever being anywhere at anytime…IF WE CAN’T THROW OUR OWN JERSEY OUT ON THE ICE IN ANGER OVER ANOTHER BULLS**T SEASON, SOME OF US WOULD EXPLODE!!!

  • Deported to Ottawa

    Interesting how talking about tossing a jersey has deflected discussion away from the terrible on ice product.

    As long as jerseys aren’t thrown during play, who really cares.

  • Deported to Ottawa

    Honestly, I see no problem in people throwing their jersey on the ice, it’s their money being wasted not yours… but like some people stated above, don’t do it while the game is in play. That’s really my only beef. To those who are preaching all high and mighty about the Leafs logo and the meaning etc. Relax… it’s not your significant other’s underpants being tossed on the ice, don’t be so offended. The jerseys get donated anyways afterwards to someone appreciative, no big deal. I have more of a problem with Detroit fans throwing octopus on the ice. This team hasn’t been good since the league expanded, and hasn’t given the fans much too cheer about or even get excited about since the early 2000’s. Let the fans be angry.

  • Spaceman Spiff

    Said this a few other times on this site… but it bears repeating:

    If you’re at a stage in your life when the fortunes of a professional hockey team can compel you to toss a $200 jersey onto the ice, losing it forever, then you need to quit professional sports for a while.

    You need to go outside into the real world, get some fresh air and connect with life again because you’ve allowed a hobby to get the best of you.

    There’s no better definition of “First World Problems” than the frustration that builds up because of a sports team … especially when it boils over to the point that a person is willing to throw away expensive novelty-clothing. Certainly not an indictable (or arrestable) offense, but not one to be boasting about or encouraging either.

    • FlareKnight

      there are points to ponder here. one addition, if i may; the frustration that builds up because of sports teams occurs as easily in the third world as it does in the first. any theories?

  • CMpuck

    In the OHL drunk fans throw dimes on the ice just to be dumb trolls and you’re going to whine about jerseys when the act actually has a point behind it? Wuss(es)…