PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman stepped to the podium in front of many Flyers fans at the NHL Draft held at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia this weekend. While you have to think Bettman was expecting some type of boo, he probably wasn’t expect the thunderous type of boo he received.
“Isn’t this supposed to be the city of brotherly love?,” Bettman asked the crowd, which continued to boo as loud as they could for about three minutes straight.
“I love your passion,” Bettman continued. The boos never stopped.
Former Flyer and fan favorite Rick Tocchet, who was recently named assistant coach for the Pittsburgh Penguins, stepped to the podium to make the Penguins first-round draft selection on Friday night. Guess what happened? More boos, because Philly never cheers a Penguin of any kind.
“You have to think it’s the best rivalry in the NHL,” Tocchet said of the Penguins and Flyers. “It’s really intense. Sidney Crosby could be one of the most hated visiting players in Philadelphia.”
The commissioner of every major sports league gets booed at every draft, every year. Philadelphia just exudes more passion—booing louder and longer than everyone else—thus creating a viral story. Nevertheless, the national media and others across the country that love to rip Philadelphia sports fans will feast on this. I’m sure the booing of Bettman will even give them an excuse to bring up Santa Claus.
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