A hockey arena in an intense playoff atmosphere is the last place I would ever expect to hear a cowbell, but lo and behold, there was one clanging every so often at the Verizon Center in Washington this afternoon when the hometown Capitals saw themselves lose to the New York Rangers 1-0, in an exciting nail-biter that saw the Rangers take an unexpected 2-0 series lead.
It’s not often that I ever mock an opposing team’s fan base because I have certain morals that include “never questioning a person’s fandom”. But after watching two games in the Capitals’ home barn, I found myself not rooting against the Capitals, but rooting against their idiotic fans that never seemed to find an excuse to make noise. You would think that making noise is what you are supposed to do as a fan, and that is correct; but not to the point where it becomes obnoxious.
Every time a Capital player slammed into the boards, whether a Ranger was there or not, they would yell and scream as if they don’t even know what a body check is, but hey if the glass moved I guess a Ranger just got plastered. They booed offsides and icings and when a puck was shot into the Rangers’ bench, they screamed in shock and disbelief that a penalty wasn’t called. I guess someone should inform them that it isn’t a penalty unless the puck goes in the crowd. But then again, maybe they would expect an additional penalty if a fan got hit in the face with a frozen piece of rubber known as a puck.
This article is not meant to insult the fans of the Capitals that are actually die-hards because I know there are many that suffered through the dark ages of Caps’ hockey and are thrilled to be rooting this team on now. But the amount of fans that have jumped on the bandwagon is just ridiculous. There is nothing wrong with cheering on a team, but to do it without a inkling of hockey knowledge is where the line should be drawn.
My friend has told me that last season, a friend of his who is a fan of the Capitals witnessed fans of his own team returning Capitals jerseys they had bought at the team store the night they were eliminated by the Philadelphia Flyers. These are probably the same fans who threw water bottles and pieces of plastic onto the ice after the Rangers won game one; not only showing their immaturity, but also putting the health of the players and on-ice officials at risk.
Fact of the matter is, the majority of these fans have only been fans of this team after the lockout, and maybe even later then that. They know their Ovechkin, and their Green, and Semin, and of course Jose Theodore, only because has been terrible. But I bet that they can’t even name ten players outside of the own team. The Capitals fans like to think that their “Rock the Red” slogan is passionate, but I just find it noisy and obnoxious.
P.S: Try chanting “Let’s Go Capitals” next time instead of “[Insert opposing team here] Sucks” because it might actually pump your team up. After all, you do know the name of the team you’re rooting for, right?
12 thoughts on “Want to Hear a Funny Joke? Try the Washington Capitals Fan Base”
Yup, all Caps fans don’t know what icing is.
And on top of that, tickets to watch our 3-6 Redskins team are the hardest to find.
Truer words never spoken.
Truer words never spoken.
The owner is so pathetic he BEGS Caps fans not sell out to Pens and Rangers fans.
He literally spies on people’s credit cards and discriminates against other team’s fans he has THAT big an inferiority complex.
The whole organization is a joke.
DC is bandwagon football town that needs to be told what an icing is.
I have been to 4 Caps games at the Verizon Center & the only time Capitols fans make any noise is when that really annoying horn guy honks his horn and everyone chants “Let’s Go Caps”.
It was also funny that at least 3 or 4 different Caps fans thought that my Colton Orr Rangers jersey was a Bobby Orr jersey.
Karl, it’s not “now it’s a tradition”.
It has been a tradition ever since the game after that, and it has held strong for THIRTY YEARS.
Because he broke some dude’s ankle 30 years ago, it’s now “tradition” to chant Potvin sucks? I understand holding a grudge… but jeez…
I guess I just don’t understand the point of the article… Because the crowd booed calls that went against their team, they must be uneducated band waggoners… I guess I just dont know what a “smart” crowd sounds like through my TV as opposed to an educated one… the fans in Vancouver and Detroit seemed to boo calls against their teams, too, but I guess it was a smarter boo. who cares if the city gets behind its team when it wins? Or if they cheer every hit, even if it didn’t leave a guy unconcious? How do you know most of the Caps fans just started following post-lockout? Who says that you have to pass a hockey test to be a fan of your city’s team? I just don’t get it…
That’s okay. Seeing how there ARE a lot of bandwagon fans in D.C. (hey, we win, fans will start to show up), I think a good number of them don’t know exactly what they’re watching.
Ok, so maybe I was a little harsh, but still, they don’t come across as knowledgeable fans, just very very loud.
As for the “Potvin Sucks” chant, it’s thirty years of tradition and actually has some history. If you would like, I can explain the story behind it. It’s not like it’s a mindless chanting of someone’s name.
tweet, tweet, tweet, tweet tweet… POTVIN SUCKS… 20+ years later, I hear that every time the Rangers and Panthers meet because Denis Potvin is in the TV booth, doing color commentary for the Panthers… classy.
Look, I come from one of the worst, band wagon jumping fan cities in the country, if not the world. I know what a bad sports city really means. It’s one thing to rag on a fan base for not showing up or not caring one way or another. It’s a completely different thing to jump on a city for becoming interested in its team when it does well. Had the Panthers made the playoffs, and been able to fill the arena 75% for a playoff game, rag on. But don’t get upset because Captials fans yell hurtful things at the Rangers…
God forbid home town fans boo a call against the home team… during the next couple games of this series in MSG, if the ref misses a call or calls a penalty against the Rangers, I expect nothing but positive criticism and respectful silence from the Ranger faithful…
P.S. Come on man… seriously? Have some pride…
In response to Tyler Siwik’s comment, I was also at that game. I was dressed in Sabres attire. Nobody said anything to me; I actually got a high five from a Caps fan. I was there before the game started as Ted Leonsis was addressing season ticket holders. He looked up and saw us in our box and extended a welcome to Washington for us. Fans actually applauded too.
The playoffs are a whole different beast. For a team that has been, well, for loack of a better word, in shambles until the past couple of seasons, I think it’s only appropriate for fans to go above and beyond to show their support. Bandwagon or not, they are in the seat supporting the team, supporting the organization and supporting the sport.
I think what makes going to a live game enjoyable (and sometimes funny) is yelling about a call or booing in a situation you know if wrong, but you do it anyway. it’s done in every single sport in every single arena all around the world.
I don’t claim to be a die hard Caps fan. I watch them casually because I live in the area. I’m sure there are bandwagon fans for the team that you root for. I’m sure fans do similar things in the arena in which you attend games to support your favorite team.
I say, unless a Caps fan did something physical to degrade you, shake it off and move on with your life.
I’ll tell my friends to stop cheering for every check, or scream for a penalty if the puck goes out of play. I’m pretty positive this doesn’t happen at other arenas. I could be wrong, because I didn’t hear any loud chants when I saw the Caps play at MSG a few years ago. I only heard fans telling me to go ***k myself while walking around the concourse.
Unlike MSG where the fans are almost on top of the players, the 400 Section is pretty far away from the ice. So please excuse those who don’t see the puck tick off an opposing player’s stick before leaving the playing surface.
A friend of a friend witnessed fans returning Caps’ jerseys on the last game of the season? Hmmm, that’s interesting. Because I remember that game going into Overtime, and the merchandise store closes after the 3rd period, regardless of an Overtime period. My guess is they got the wrong size and wanted their money back before it was too late. Things aren’t always what they seem.
I’m sorry that you’re ticked off about our fan support, but that is pretty much the goal of our chants: To cheer on our team and to upset opposing fans and players (we try to keep it clean, we’re no Flyers fans). So, Mission Accomplished from that point of view.
While not defending fans throwing out objects after that Game 7 defeat, if King Henrik got run over…blatantly, which led to a season-ending goal, I’m sure you too would be pretty upset at the refs.
Just curious on how many games you have attended at the Verizon Center this past season…because there is seriously no way you can attempt to qualify yourself as saying, ‘the majority of these fans have only been fans of this team after the lockout, and maybe even later then that.’
Just a guess, but I’m not sure the Capitals marketing team took into consideration whether fans of the opposing teams approved of their “Rock the Red” slogan. I didn’t like “Vengeance: Now” for the Flyers last year, and I certainly don’t like…”I am a Ranger.” Wait. Is that your slogan for the playoffs?
It’s probably because you don’t understand that Washington DC, being the transient city it is, attracts people from all over the country every 4-8 years — including a huge segment of people who didn’t grow up with hockey, and therefore don’t get standard, I dunno, “fan protocols” you’re looking so hard for.
Do you really think that people who grew up in Arkansas and Hawaii are as savvy at a game as some grizzled old New York fan?
And did I just hear you call DC fans obnoxious? That from a New York fan of ANY stripe? Really?! Pot calling the kettle BLACK, my friend. Oh, and New York fans never throw anything. Really.
You should just be happy that the Caps have a rabid fanbase. Annoying or not, Hockey in general doesn’t have the luxury of turning away fans, no matter how annoying you find them.
Couple things for you. I am a penguins fan, but i was visiting my brother in DC so we went to the game vs the sabres a couple weeks ago. I swear they are so uneducated. They booed a delay of game call on the caps when the puck clearly went into the stands and they are probably the only fans that chant “Refs you Suck”.(they did that multiple times during the night)
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