DETROIT - The tentacles of the NHL have targeted the tentacles in Detroit.
The Red Wings' fans long standing tradition of throwing octopi on the ice is getting the attention of the NHL and Detroit police. In Game 1 on Wednesday police charged a man with throwing an octopus on the ice. He was fined $500.
The Red Wings released a statement which indicated the NHL has asked authorities to charge anyone they see throwing anything on the ice. The police officer would have to see the person throwing the cephalopod.
"The throwing of objects onto the ice surface is prohibited by the National Hockey League and persons caught doing so may be subject to prosecution for violating local and state laws," the statement said.
Predictably, the reaction of many fans and players was outrage."Do they want everybody to come to the rink and sit on their hands not doing anything? People are taking it a little too seriously," said Wings' goaltender Chris Osgood.
But some fans, not just the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, are sick of seeing it happen continually. In fact, the NHL has a rule that allows for a penalty to be assessed the home team if objects are thrown on the ice during a stoppage in play.
By the way, the tradition started in the 50s. The octopus' appendages represented the eight wins needed to win a Stanley Cup back then.