Tim Robbins is a noted director, screenwriter and Academy Award winning actor. (Plus, he was in Howard the Duck.) He's also a big hockey fan and is frequently seen in the crowd during New York Rangers games at Madison Square Garden.
Despite a busy life, Robbins has also found time to participate in a weekend roller hockey game in Greenwich Village in New York City. For over 20 years, adults from all walks of life met at William F. Passannante Ballfield to play.
But last weekend featured their final games, because their permit application renewal was rejected by the New York City Parks Department after complaints from park-goers that their safety was in danger from flying pucks.
From the New York Post:
“I think it’s terrible,” said Academy Award-winning actor Tim Robbins, an occasional player, before the final game at the park last Saturday. “It is a cross-section of New Yorkers. There are doctors, musicians. It’s a pretty special group of people, and this is kind of what New York is all about: sharing space.”
Here's Robbins in action in 2011:
The NYC Parks Department is trying to find the players an actual inline rink to play in, but there's a tradition to what's been going on on their makeshift rink for the past 20 years. The players say they're willing to move, but wish there could be some sort of an agreement to remain at Passannante Ballfield. According to the Post, a Harlem ice hockey league is the beneficiary of many fundraising games from the group.
Robbins and his buddies should just take a page out of William Devane's book and march to the Parks Department offices and start chanting, "Let them play!"
Hey, it worked for the Bad News Bears.
Follow Sean Leahy on Twitter at @Sean_Leahy