The Washington Capitals bested the Boston Bruins during Wednesday night’s Stanley Cup playoffs game. Joel Ward, a black player, scored the winning goal for the Caps.
But things got ugly on Twitter after the game, with some Bruins fans targeting Ward and firing off racist tweets (Black Sports Online has a compilation of those offensive tweets).The reaction has been decried by some of Ward’s teammates and Caps team owner Ted Leonsis.
The Boston Bruins were the first team in the National Hockey League to have a black player.
Racism from fans is nothing new. Former Georgetown University basketball coach John Thompson Jr. had to deal with similar incidents during his career. Thompson appeared on Thursday’s The Kojo Nnamdi Show and spoke about how he handled overt racism as a Georgetown coach. He also said that the tweets about Ward do “not reflect the view of everybody. It reflects the view of a few ignorant people who are still among us.” But, he added, that such an incident “rips the scab off. You reflect on what has happened to you on the past and you say, ‘My God, this still exists. This still happens.’”