No one was safe from the beverage-tossing wrath of Islanders fans after their Game 4 defeat – not even one of the franchise’s all-time greats.
Denis Potvin was, is and will always be among the Nassau Coliseum’s favorite sons. He’s a legend, a Hall of Famer, one of the best defensemen ever to play the game and, of course, New York Islanders royalty. He was instrumental in their four straight Stanley Cup victories from 1980 to 1983.
But that resume apparently wasn’t enough to save him from peril at Barclays Center, the Islanders’ new home building, after Game 4 of their Atlantic Division semifinal matchup versus the Florida Panthers. The Cats won to even the series 2-2 and, you see, Potvin is now the Panthers’ regular color commentator on FOX Sports. After the game, he and play-by-play man Steve Goldstein got beer or soda or some kind of liquid dumped on them by some Isles fans.
Video (well, audio by way of video) evidence of the incident, as confirmed by a Twitter user named Kevin Bustillo:
— Kevin Bustillo (@KBustillo1) April 21, 2016
It’s tough to imagine an Islander fan deliberately disrespecting one of the franchise’s most celebrated players. so let’s hope that didn’t happen. The more logical explanation is the fans didn’t realize Potvin was in the line of fire. An alternate explanation: it was, er, a Brooklyn fan, and not a Long Island fan, so maybe there was a knowledge gap. OK, that’s a troll job. Apologies. But admit it – the thought crossed your mind.
Matt Larkin is a writer and editor at The Hockey News and a regular contributor to the thn.com Post-To-Post blog. For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, subscribe to The Hockey News magazine. Follow Matt Larkin on Twitter at @THNMattLarkin