I went to the Sens/Leafs game last night, and I thought I would write up a little recap of my experience. Now I will say first, I love the city of Toronto, if I liked baseball more I would be a bigger Jays fan. And I go to Toronto FC games as well. But the Leafs, God, I hate the Leafs. There is something about a certain section of the Leafs crowd that is just obnoxious.
So anyway, I was sitting in section 311, row 10, a decent view and good chirping with the enemy. I wore my Spezza jersey to the game (this will turn out to be very important apparently). I didn't catch much abuse on the way to the game after work or in the pregame or even in most of the 1st period as it was a very dull start. A few "boo!" here and there. The people in 2-3 rows behind me didn't seem to be the smartest bunch though, randomly alternating cheering and booing the announcements of various referees, booing the ACC being a smoke free facility and various other things.
After the first Senators goal, I stood up and cheered, and promptly got told to sit down, which is fair enough but still made me laugh. Previously when I have been to games here, there are always one or two other Sens fan in my row or above or below my row. This time it seemed like I was the only one in a good 6-7 row span.
Now things got really interesting in the second period after Gonchar's goal, the crowd was getting restless and when Gonchar scored, the guy behind me sprayed my neck a bit with his beer. This of course greatly annoyed me and I asked him if he had any class, to which he replied I am blocking his view. Apparently he really wanted to see the Sens celebrate the goal!
When Karlsson scored a few minutes later, I was super pumped. I turned around and clapped in his face, which drew the ire of several rows and a few death threats, all in good fun though. Beer spraying guy's girlfriend also gave me the finger, which was cute.
This is when things got really amusing and really obsessive with Spezza. The guy behind me started a chant of "Spezza likes wieners!" which quickly snowballed into a good 6 or so rows. I have to admit, that was hilarious and made me put my head on the railing and burst out laughing. Even my Leafs friend that I went with joined in. After it was over, a few of the Leafs fans told me I was a good sport for taking it in stride.
The third period drew more Spezza chants. The new one was "Spezza's got a boner!". Followed by questions of "But Spezza doesn't wear glasses!". (I wear glasses) An old guy in front explained to me that it was the fact I was wearing Spezza's jersey, if I wore anyone else it wouldn't be as bad. When asked what if I wore my Alfredsson jersey, he said "we are pro Swedish here".
Spezza getting robbed on the 2 on 1 (maybe that was in 2nd period) didn't help the chants either, nor did his penalty late in the 3rd period. With about 2 minutes left, beer spray guy and girlfriend gave up and left, despite the Leafs being on a powerplay on which they would later score.
Finally on the final buzzer was the worst part, as some other fan a few rows up dumped about half a cup of beer in my hair, but hey if they want to waste a $12 or $13 beer or whatever the price is, up to them!
All in all, going to a Sens/Leafs game is an awesome experience if you have thick skin and can take a bit of banter, it's a great atmosphere. The beer spray was uncalled for, but I have been to 10-12 Sens/Leafs games and that was the first time that happened, one couple also apologised to me at the end of the game for that.
I look forward to the next one!