This isn't your typical hockey fight.
What was supposed to be a simple mock brawl between ice hockey mascots on Thursday turned into a bruising public relations beating for the Minnesota Wild, which was forced to apologize after the skit offended some social media users.
The incident began innocently enough when a group of mascots gathered on the ice to “celebrate” Wild mascot Nordy’s “birthday,” The Independent reported. The wild animal – no one knows what type of animal he is – was blindfolded and set up to hit a piñata. But instead, Nordy whacked Chicago Blackhawks mascot Tommy Hawk, who had shoved cake in Nordy’s face earlier (yes, this was a very elaborate act).
But Chicago Tribune reporter Chris Kuc wrote that the mascot’s satirical walloping took a “dark turn” when Nordy continued thrashing Tommy Hawk at the behest of the Wild’s announcer.
“Finally, Devils mascot NJ Devil stepped in and stopped the mock beating and with the help of another mascot dragged a seemingly unconscious – or perhaps dead – Tommy Hawk off the ice,” Kuc wrote about the obviously play-acted pounding. (Tommy Hawk survived the episode.)
Kuc continued: “…I was glad I wasn’t in the stands with my young son having to explain why his favorite mascot was just apparently beaten with a baseball bat.”
While some Twitter users appreciated the comedy of the mascot fracas, others reacted as Kuc did, prompting the Wild to issue an apology, at the urging of the NHL, Kuc reported.
“We apologize to anyone offended by the mascot skit Thursday night,” the Wild said in a statement. “It was certainly not our intention.”
Not everything went amiss for the Wild on Thursday – they beat the Canadiens, 7-1.