Throughout this controversial season for the Chicago Blackhawks, there’s been talk about fans who may have left the fold and talk of that talk being poppycock public posturing.
So it was interesting to see Monday’s farewell note from Hockeenight, one of the most popular and hilarious Blackhawks fan blogs. (And a collection of writers who have previously worked on our Eulogys.) Here’s what they wrote:
The last year brought rape allegations, revenge porn, homophobic slurs, and countless dudebros defending the indefensible simply because the perpetrators happened to play sports for a team they supported. What had once been a pleasure became a labor.
And this year had a “staying together for the kids” feel to it. We didn’t recap at all, until we saw where we could provide a little levity to some friends going through a tough time, but I’m sure you’ll agree that our hearts clearly weren’t in it. And you guys deserve better.
But the way the Chicago Blackhawks handled every one of these incidents made it clear to us that this was no longer an organization that we could continue supporting in this way. We couldn’t bring our usual hubris to things we’ve done in the past like “View From The Top” knowing that we couldn’t defend our own with a clear conscience.
And we always promised each other that we’d do this until it was no longer fun, and here we are. Spending this season tilting at windmills simply got exhausting, and watching and recapping Blackhawks games simply got to be something that neither of us wanted to do, since it’s not our livelihood.
I reached out to them for some context on the decision: Was this more a message for the fellow fans, or one for the Blackhawks?
From HockeeNight’s ‘Fork Lift’: “It was as much catharsis as anything. The Hawks' shit giving on our thoughts is nil. And any Hawks fans who might waver just get reeled in on the next ‘What's Your Goal?’ Ad, where the Hawks show themselves as a rainbow factory without creating any fundraising awareness for whoever is in the spot with your favorite player.”
From HockeeNight’s ‘CT’: “Yeah, I don't see it as sending any kind of message to the organization. For everyone involved, this was a something done in their spare time, and the Blackhawks are making me question how much of my spare time I should be devoting to them.
“But, I do think a large part of our popularity(?) was based on input from and interaction with our readers. We count many of those people as our friends, and I believe we did owe them an explanation for why were shutting down.”
As Julie DiCaro noted:
In the last year, some of the biggest Blackhawks fans I know have just walked away from the team. Hawks should care.
— Julie DiCaro (@JulieDiCaro) May 2, 2016
Whether you see this as symptomatic of something larger or a vocal minority of Chicago fans greatly depends on how you felt about the team’s handling of the controversies listed above. Even if it’s the latter, it should be enough for the Hawks to take notice.
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