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Video: Mike Wise on Madison Square Garden

Post columnist Mike Wise thinks Caps fans could learn a little something from attending a game at Madison Square Garden -- "a real hockey arena."

As video commenter ranndino proved by arguing that Jose Theodore was NOT the answer for Game 2, Mike isn't always right. So if you disagree, we want to hear from you. Record a response to Mike if you've got a webcam and let him know what you think.

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  April 21, 2009; 12:24 PM ET
 
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Comments

Since when is Mike Wise an expert on anything related to hockey? What, exactly, does he expect us to learn? How to shout expletives and throw trash at opposing teams players? Not exactly classy there, Mikey.

Posted by: ShariLeigh131 | April 21, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: AreYouKiddingMe1 | April 21, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

I wish Mike Wise would stay at MSG.

Posted by: FancyDan | April 21, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse


SEAN-B-GONE Avery Tshirt

http://www.zazzle.com/rockthered

Posted by: rockthered21 | April 21, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

It'd be wrong to say that an ideal hockey fan would give a standing ovation to Sean Avery who contributed with multiple penalties for his team. Also the throwing beer bottles and other debris is something illegal. Having said that there are way too many bandwagon fans in Verizon Center, most of which have no knowledge of what penalties are and what offside and icing mean. The only thing they are useful for is an excuse for Leonsis to drive up the ticket prices. It amazes me how many Ovechkin fans there are as opposed to pure Caps fans. This same bandwagon happened with Jagr during his time (not comparing Ovie to Jagr). Learn the game first, be loud and belligerent and if you take your kids to the nosebleeds know that the language you'll hear isn't the same you'd hear in the lower bowl.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Wow was this supposed to be serious?

I was at game 2 and last nights game.

And by far the Caps had the better atmosphere. So what if a fan starts a chant, I think its cool.

Don't act like your some hardcore hockey fan that has been to every arena. The Caps fans at verizon have done a good job.

Posted by: TJ2008 | April 21, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I'm not biting.

Posted by: saintex | April 21, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

I don't really think Caps fans can play the "throwing things on the ice" card after Game 7 last year.

Posted by: Caps21 | April 21, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

why does hockey have this snobbery? i dont read fans complaining like this in other sports. i am at a game to root on the team, not to evaluate fellow fans (or to be evaluated).

Posted by: mikebrady1 | April 21, 2009 12:40 PM | Report abuse

The Ragger fans need a cheerleader or two... they are awfully quiet. Is this dork serious? Oh, and REAL fans should behave by tossing objects onto the ice? OK, there Wise man... what an idiot.

Posted by: UngaBunga | April 21, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Its been pretty well documented that the Caps fans have improved dramatically over the last two seasons and are very well thought off league wide as opposed to a few season ago. Obviously Mike is just trying to rile us up a little more; maybe its the Sean Avery in him. With that being said, for years I had been frustrated with the lack of a real hockey atmosphere so the improvement is more than welcome but I definitely would love to see a little more NY or Philly Snarl and bark in the Caps crowd or at least just consistent, committed positive noise to keep the energy up for the Cappies. NY and Philly on the other hand are often likely to turn on their teams when the going gets rough, so that is most definitely not to their team's advantage. All and all, I am proud of how far we've come as a hockey town since I was a kid watching Pens Caps in quadruple overtime and way too much yellow and black in the crowd.

Posted by: ParticipatoryDemocracyNow | April 21, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Okay. I love love the Caps. But I absolutely know what Wise is talking about. I was at game 3 of the 2002 playoffs against Tampa. There were maybe 13,000 fans at that game.

So, for sure, DC is a bandwagon city.

Also, there have been too many times that I find myself sitting to the guy that yells "Take a SHOT!" every time a Cap touches the puck in the offensive zone. Or screams "WHAT?!?!" thinking there's a penalty when it's actually an offside call.

Posted by: Bohemians1905 | April 21, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

It'd be wrong to say that an ideal hockey fan would give a standing ovation to Sean Avery who contributed with multiple penalties for his team. Also the throwing beer bottles and other debris is something illegal. Having said that there are way too many bandwagon fans in Verizon Center, most of which have no knowledge of what penalties are and what offside and icing mean. The only thing they are useful for is an excuse for Leonsis to drive up the ticket prices. It amazes me how many Ovechkin fans there are as opposed to pure Caps fans. This same bandwagon happened with Jagr during his time (not comparing Ovie to Jagr). Learn the game first, be loud and belligerent and if you take your kids to the nosebleeds know that the language you'll hear isn't the same you'd hear in the lower bowl.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Hey, whatever gets people in that door and hooked on hockey is fine with me. Last year, some friends of mine organized a surprise b-day party at a Caps game (don't ask) and some friends came out of loyalty and not because they like hockey. But at the end of the night, every oen of them was hooked. no, they didn't know hooking or icing or much of anything else, only that hockey was way more fun than they had thought. A 14 months later, they're finally picking up on the other aspects of the game.

I did have a couple friends ask me this year if they could come to games, because they wanted to see "what all the hype is about." Again, they left the game totally hooked on the sport (and Ovie and Friends). I'm hoping they turn into hockey lifers, but everyone has to start somewhere, and if that's jumping on the bandwagon, so be it.

Posted by: RedBirdie | April 21, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

The fans tossing things on the ice after the game was over last year was a low point. I was there and I was embarrassed. I hope that we Caps fans never have a repeat of that sort of behavior.

I think last night was worse, but only worse because it was during play and players could have been injured finishing out the game. The Rangers faithful did not think (shocker) or care that they could have some of their own players hurt.

Posted by: _Mark | April 21, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

elrumpy88: Actually you will find just as many, if not more families in the upper deck because young couples cannot afford seats @ $105 a pop, not the real family fans that try to go to more than 1 game. Shouldn't have to assume some Jack A is going to be in the upper deck sloshing beer and yelling obscenities. It's not allowed in the stadium, ANYWHERE. Tickets in the corner in the upper deck for the first round are @ $46 a pop. Not exactly a cheap night out. On the flip side emotions take over some time so a GD or SH.. is to be expected. To have fans squaring off in the stands is BS. After 2 emotional 1 goal losses at home I didn't see any junk thrown onto the ice this last week, nor did I see any Rangers fans running for their lives which says a little about the character of Caps fans.

I do agree the bandwagon fans are out in full force and get frustrated listening to people yell shooooot, when we see the same lane OV or Green does and there's no way a shot will get through.

Make no mistake about it, they are as many bandwagon fans in NY because it is the cool thing to do downtown. Too many celebs @ their games for me to think any differently. The only 17-22K seat stadium to pack more famous people (not playing in the game) is @ Lakers and Knicks games.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 21, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

That said though, the atmosphere at the games now is unreal.

Posted by: Bohemians1905 | April 21, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Wow, this just totally made my day! Now I'm going to go have some lunch and bask in my glory.

P.S. cstanton1's head must have just exploded.

Posted by: ranndino | April 21, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Yes, no more cheering instead lets get some goofy glow in the dark sticks. yaaay for hockey and the circus!!!

Posted by: cappies | April 21, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

So, Mike, what you're saying is that you'd prefer that Caps fans dump popcorn on handicapped fans of the opponent, and throw trash on the ice when a goal is scored, and stop cheering to try to amp up their team when they're down a point, and support punks like Avery and his crap? I'd rather give up bellowing for a little class, but that's just me.

Posted by: KellyinDC | April 21, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

@mikebrady1: True, but if you are a real fan, I mean a real fan, you feel for your team when they are in a rut, you don't boo them. I am a fan that gets ticked off when I have to come to work and hear, "oh the crapitals are down 2-0 to the Rangers." That from the same jerk that said "hey bud if you ever find yourself with a couple extra season tickets let me know."

Now we have fans in the stadium, maybe it's even you, that don't boo when we lose, but they boo if the caps don't complete a stick to stick pass. Listening to fans dissect a game that they just started watching a couple of years ago because it's the cool thing to do is frustrating.

Now, I really do enjoy the sell out crowds and the energy it brings to the building. I will take that over hearing my voice echo from across the stadium any day.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 21, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

I don't really think Caps fans can play the "throwing things on the ice" card after Game 7 last year.

Posted by: Caps21 | April 21, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

true, but that was after the game ended, not during play and not coins, etc. there is no excuse for throwing anything on the ice at any time and i was embarrassed that a small few at VC did that. however, its alot more dangerous and uncalled for during the play.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Last year's fan behavior was due to the lousy calls and non-calls by the refs. I can't really blame them for that. I don't think that was in retort to the teams or gameplay

Posted by: Greg S. | April 21, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

I am wise to your tactics, Wise. You are playing "the game" with the readers, being Mr. Contrarian, and they are eating it up. But I see the light...

Posted by: sargeantmofo | April 21, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Couple things, can anyone name a city where they sell out when the team sucks? Not just hockey, any sport? I don't where this bandwagon arguement is coming from. Most people, no matter how much they support the team don't want to pay to see their team stink up the joint. If the owner puts a competitive team on the ice/field/floor then people will come and watch them.

Are there more hockey fans in other cities like NY, Philly and Boston? Absolutely. It's due to tradition, history and demographics. But to use this logic to argue that one city's fans are better or more passionate than another's is incorrect.

The Bruins might arguably have the largest and most loyal fan base and yet they had trouble filling half the rink a few years ago, practically begging people to come out for like $15 a seat. I don't need anyone, especially fans of other teams coming here and telling me about Caps fans.

Onto more important stuff like the playoffs that are going on right now.

Let's not all get carried away by the win last night as some did when we lost two in a row. It's true that we put alot of pieces together and had a good game but also had a bunch of fortunate bounces. We still let then get 33 shots on goal and I still don't feel like we're clearing our crease as best as we can. Varly was fortunate that the Rags missed a couple empty netters and that the puck hit him through screens.

Giving the Rags 6 PP is also troubling even though they have not been able to score. The Caps need to keep up the intensity on Wednesday because the Rags will button up on D and force the issue with the Rook.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 21, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

MY FANS ARE BETTER THAN YOUR FANS!

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

I am wise to your tactics, Wise. You are playing "the game" with the readers, being Mr. Contrarian, and they are eating it up. But I see the light...

Posted by: sargeantmofo | April 21, 2009 1:00 PM |

Yeah, he is trying a bit too hard. The guy who spent 10 years in New York is going to praise New York fans? Shocker...

Moose33, the Bruins?!??! Haha. They have more bandwagon hoppers than ANYONE this year.

The most loyal fanbase in hockey are the Sabres fanbase.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Mike Wise's Bio:

- Graduated from Fresno State University in 1988 and promptly took a sports writing job at The Sanger Herald, a 5,000 weekly newspaper

- The New York Times hired him in July of 1994 as a beat reporter covering the New Jersey Nets.

- Joined The Washington Post in March of 2004 after 10 years at The New York Times

- Has covered the nine NBA finals, two summer Olympics, one Winter Olympics and has also written about baseball, boxing and figure skating

- Has won eight Associated Press Sports Editors awards

Hmmm, his background reeks of Hockey experience. Is he an editor or a writer? Coming up with your own words and massaging someone else's are two different worlds.

Posted by: fanohock1 | April 21, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

It'd be wrong to say that an ideal hockey fan would give a standing ovation to Sean Avery who contributed with multiple penalties for his team. Also the throwing beer bottles and other debris is something illegal. Having said that there are way too many bandwagon fans in Verizon Center, most of which have no knowledge of what penalties are and what offside and icing mean. The only thing they are useful for is an excuse for Leonsis to drive up the ticket prices. It amazes me how many Ovechkin fans there are as opposed to pure Caps fans. This same bandwagon happened with Jagr during his time (not comparing Ovie to Jagr). Learn the game first, be loud and belligerent and if you take your kids to the nosebleeds know that the language you'll hear isn't the same you'd hear in the lower bowl.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

posts like this make me laugh. so rediculous. so when the red wings couldnt draw flies in the eighties and then started selling out, you'd call them bandwagon fans? or would you call them people who appreciate and want to see/pay for good winning hockey. i guess everytime the caps get a big crowd, its due to bandwagon fans. and i'm sure you can spot a bandwagon fan a mile away. what i know is the folks who sit near me have been there for years, through think and thin. i dare say they know more about hockey than you and have seen more caps action than you could dream of.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

@richmondphil,

Again, you're confusing actual fans who have started to come back to watch the games because their team is actually good with non-hockey fans who just heard the Bruins were good and want to see them play.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 21, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

No. I am not confusing anything. I have tons and tons of friends in Boston, this is direct experience.

The Sabres have been traditionally the team with the loyal fanbase. A Mike Wise video isn't going to change that.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

fanohock1,I agree with you about the ticket prices and about families sitting up in the eagle's nest. That's where my parents took me when I went to games. What I'm saying is you (Wise and others) cannot expect the crowd to be at the same level of tenacity and belligerence of say the flyers or rangers if booing the refs gives you a lecture from a parent because he's trying to teach his kids sportsmanship. I've been to Wachovia center for various games and its common for the 18,000 plus to chant F*** you Ovie and no one have a problem with it. It's their culture to do that and one that for good or bad is part of the hardcore fan. In terms of bandwagon fans, its frustrating to see that the Caps during the "Halpern as captain" era would pull 14,000 people/average along little media coverage and then when success comes along suddenly everyone seems to be a hockey fan. Its good to bring people to see the Caps but cheer for the Caps not just Ovechkin. Just like don't jeer Crosby for just being Crosby, rather for being the captain of the Penguins.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Also, doesn't the sport need bandwagon fans to grow it's fan base? Some guy who doesn't know a thing about hockey but heard of Ovie and wants to come see a game. He gets hooked, learns about the game and buys season tickets. I don't see a problem here.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 21, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Any support is good for your team...take the elitist attitudes somewhere else. I've been a Caps Fan since birth, but always welcome new fans no matter how much they know about hockey. Bandwagoners or the guys that were there during the "Butch" Cassidy years - the more, the louder, the better.

Who cares what NY fans do? Who cares what Mike Wise says?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | April 21, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Take a poll at the next game.

"Did we trade Joe Thorton?"

I bet tons will say No, we still have Thorton, he's on the 4th line!

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

That's great that you have tons of friends in Boston. Have you ever lived there? I lived for 3 years so my experience is first hand when it comes to their fan base.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 21, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

I have no problem with the concept of "bandwagon fans". The whole god complex involved is stupid.

I'm just saying....Boston is chock full of them this year, and Buffalo houses the most loyal fanbase.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

I go to Boston about 5-6 times a year.

Moose33, calm down. If you want to win this argument so bad, good for you. It's not really an issue that matters.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

I thought the crowds at the first two games sounded great. Even though they didn't really get anything to cheer for in the 2nd game, you could tell the place was ready to explode. MSG grew dead silent far before the final score was evident.

Posted by: honed | April 21, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan1:
Considering I've lived in the U.S. since 95 and went to my first game in 96 being 8, I like my chances of knowing about the caps from the period until now. And you don't need even need a mile when there is a whistle and someone is yelling "we're getting a powerplay". Also in the early 80s not only were the Wings bad but the economy was just as bad or worse in Detroit as it is today, which usually means less fans. If you were truly knowledgeable you'd know the Wings got Yzerman in 83 and made the playoffs, before then was when they stunk.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Trust me dude, I'm calm. It takes more than your blanket statements about Boston fans to get me worked up.

I'd love to see your survey results from the 5-6 times you've been up there.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 21, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

elrumpy, and before the halpern era they drew 17K per game. and before the pens got crosby they averaged 10-11K per game. are they bandwagon fans? even buffalo struggled w/ attendance around the lockout. most nhl towns are like that, exceptions being canadian cities and philly, ny. nothing new. doesn't mean the fans know less or only cheer for one player.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

I will say that Buffalo have VERY patient fans. They're very loyal to their team, too. They're not having difficulties selling season tix despite being out of the playoffs for a few seasons.

Posted by: Greg S. | April 21, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Lol, what is wrong with you? I make one sstatement about Boston fans, and you get all butt hurt?
HMMM...the guy who used to live in Boston is getting butt hurt about Boston fans and calling their fanbase the most loyal, and the guy who used to live in NY is getting butt hurt about NY fans and calling their fanbase the most loyal.

Is that a coincidence?

Buffalo has ALWAYS been known for having the most loyal fanbase. Is this all of a sudden under question because of a Mike Wise video? LOL

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Mike Wise you are my hero. I wish I could be paid to troll people and make wild blog posts about whatever stuff i made up just now.

I am serious...if you are looking for an EU correspondent I will happily make stuff up for you

Posted by: trunkenmath | April 21, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

I will say that Buffalo have VERY patient fans. They're very loyal to their team, too. They're not having difficulties selling season tix despite being out of the playoffs for a few seasons.

Posted by: Greg S. | April 21, 2009 1:25 PM |

Thank you. It's not like this is rocket science here.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

I'm not biting.

Posted by: saintex | April 21, 2009 12:36 PM


X2 on that one dude.

Posted by: Fro_ | April 21, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Look around and count how many jerseys you see around VC with a C on an Ovie sweater, that can't be the quality of fans you want. I'm all for getting knowledgeable, loud fans because it is a team people should get hooked on but is it going to be loyal enough? Just look at Game 2 when there were a good amount of people booing. Just remember the stands were also full during the Jagr era and then we had a lull with very few fans attending.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

wow, elrumpy, i take that back. you've obviously seen a lot of hockey since your voice changed and you started to get that "funny feeling" way back in 2000. yes, i'll defer to you on all issues relating to the history of caps fan support.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Greg S -- yes the bottles after OT game 7 last year were due to questionable calls, but I do blame the fans for throwing them. It was classless and it should not happen. Worse, it made it harder for the fans to give a final cheer to a team that had given us an incredible amount of entertainment leading up to and including the playoffs. Ovi had to dodge the debris after coming out to give some applause to the fans.

The booing during game 2 was lame. Then some idiot in 104 threw a bottle on the ice at the end.

We're better than that.

Posted by: Sonyask | April 21, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

You got it all figured out Sherlock, congrats. If it makes you feel smart and special, go with it. I'm not the one swooning over Buffalo fans, I just made the point that your statement of Boston having the most bandwagon fans is inaccurate.

But hey, that was before I knew you had "tons and tons" of friends in Boston. How many friends are there in a ton by the way? 10 - 15?

Posted by: Moose33 | April 21, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm, well after reading Wise's comparison to the 1980 Olympic team and his quote from the Morning Reading list (I didn't bother to read the referenced article), I concluded he is not only having an extended celebration of 4/20 but also has no sense of that of which he speaks/writes. I don't need to waste my time watching this.

Posted by: CapsChick | April 21, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan1:

2004–05 lockout
Jeff Halpern, 2005–06 (Ovie's Rookie Season) 13,905 attendance
Clark 2006-07 13,929

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan1:

No objective point? Wow even then you'd realize that I've been following the team for more than a third of their existence I like my chances.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

W....T....F ???

Lifelong Caps fan from NY and in no way was the Garden last night anything what everyone was making it out to be. Being that NY had the edge 2-0, I was expecting to be harassed walking into MSG with my Caps gear on and this was just wasn't the case. I was in DC when the Caps played TB and was impressed by the crowd level and energy. Obviously the Rangers didn't have much to cheer for so most of the noise was negative, but come on this vid/article is just stupid. Big deal, NY had the blow-up white lightsaber things..... but by the 3rd period most of them were on the ice out of frustration for their team. I'm just thrilled that I didn't have to hear the stupid Rangers goal song.

BTW, disappointed with Caps fans turnout for game 3. There weren't many of us at all. Buy your tickets, make the trip up north and help me fight back against these pizza slinging guidos.

Caps FTW.

Posted by: NY_SKINS | April 21, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

elrumpy, go back to when you were still wearing spiderman underwear and they were drawing 16-17K between the finals year of 98 (you remember, you got your training wheels off that summer) and 2001-2002 (junior high school).

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

mise wise should not be writing about hockey. i'll take tarik or dan anyday of the week over him. he's out of touch with the team, the game and the fans. we do not like.

Posted by: whateva1 | April 21, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

holy cow, more than 1/3rd!!! good for you. considering you couldn't drive yourself to a game until ovie's rookie year, i'd say you probably dont want to be playing the longevity card around here...

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan1:
Its funny that you'd mention driving to a game in DC considering the metro drops you off at Verizon/MCI. Maybe longevity is affecting your memory. But either way it's cool to be an older caps fan, must have been hard that first season, assuming you were a fan then too.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Looking back at the posts, I apologize to all that had to read the trivial back and forth on a day we should all be happy.

richmondphil, in the end, I really don't care about Boston or their fans so whatever you say is fine with me. I give.

I blame Wise.

Posted by: Moose33 | April 21, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

elrumpy, indeed you can take metro to vc. and you get student discounts to boot. but those first years were tough. hard to watch a team like that. but it does give you some perspective on the team and fan loyalty, etc. and with age comes an innate ability to spot kids such as yourself who like to read things and repeat them without any factual basis or original thought. i like to keep my aging mind sharp by rebutting your baseless opinions with facts. and i get a good laugh too, which helps keep me young. maybe i'll see you around the VC and buy you a beer...oh, maybe not since i dont thing you are 21 yet are you?

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

BTW, disappointed with Caps fans turnout for game 3. There weren't many of us at all. Buy your tickets, make the trip up north and help me fight back against these pizza slinging guidos.

Caps FTW.

Posted by: NY_SKINS | April 21, 2009 1:48 PM |

tickets at the Garden are expensive dude.

you buy my ticket, and I will drive up there, haha.

Posted by: richmondphil | April 21, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Is this the first hockey game Mike has attended outside "the phone booth?" New to this sport, Mike?

Two points. I've attended NHL games in several cities over the past 30 years -- Buffalo, Philly (where I live, unfortunately), Calgary and, most recently Tampa, and of course Washington, among others. You want to see real hockey? Real hockey fans? It ain't in the US - go to Canada -- ANY city, any level. Just because a bunch of lobotomized or drugged, drunk, unshaven, slovenly, loud and obnoxious New Yorkers (pardon the redundancy) impressed Mike doesn't mean they are the fans we want to emulate.

Caps fans used to be like Tampa fans today -- quiet, if absent. Caps fans have come a long, long way. The arena is noisy, the fans are awesome, and they have 3 times the class of fans in any other city (especially Pittsburgh, where they will pour beer over the heads of visiting fans, and Buffalo). Just because we have manners and IQ's over 70 doesn't make us weak, wimpy fans.

So Mike, you're wrong. With all due respect, of course.

Posted by: bucknelldad | April 21, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan:
what's baseless and/or wrong? You were wrong about the Wings in the 80s since in 83 they returned to the playoffs.you had one fact right, i didn't nor could i drive to verizon/mci. but then again perhaps I am smart for my age for riding the metro instead. Don't worry for me about not being 21, but rather for the prices. Imagine a fan like yourself suggesting to drive to the game, parking $+ticket$+beer for me$. I hope that law school can get me a job where I too can do the same and drive to verizon...pretty baseless to do that right?

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

elrumpy, which one of these statements can your really back up w/facts?

Having said that there are way too many bandwagon fans in Verizon Center, most of which have no knowledge of what penalties are and what offside and icing mean. The only thing they are useful for is an excuse for Leonsis to drive up the ticket prices. It amazes me how many Ovechkin fans there are as opposed to pure Caps fans. This same bandwagon happened with Jagr during his time (not comparing Ovie to Jagr).

baseless meaning having no basis in fact. if you are indeed a law student, you will quickly learn the difference between speculation, hearsay and baseless arguements and those that are factual. good luck in law school. i heard the market for new lawyers is pretty strong.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

"Couple things, can anyone name a city where they sell out when the team sucks? Not just hockey, any sport?"

Redskins.

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 21, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

dcsportsfan1:
Not Hearsay: I was at the game and the guy next to me yelled penalty on an offside whistle. Since its a 1st person account, not hearsay.
Not speculation: The more fans are willing to spend (those who people missing during Cassidy,Hanlon era)the higher Leonsis can charge for a ticket. Simple econ explains it.
Not speculation: As a regular attending caps fan like myself you must have seen that at the time jagr played here his jerseys were more popular than anyone else except Kolzig, and that's first hand account, can't speculate with that.

Posted by: elrumpy88 | April 21, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

As an "almost real" hockey fan of 38 years, I say that young and new hockey fans need to learn about the game too. When my Dad took me to my first game in 1971, I didn't know the difference between icing and ice in my soft drink. Everybody has to learn about this great sport!
I sit in the upper deck with my kids so we can afford to go. Should I have to be subjected to a "real" fan who shouts cuss words the whole game just because he's downed too much overpriced beer, or is trying to impress his friend (or truthfully his friend's girlfriend, because he doesn't have one)? No. Enjoy the game, yell some, cheer some, get mad some, but respect us other "almost real" fans who also paid too much to get in! Great game last night -Go Caps!!

Posted by: kcbrichmond | April 21, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

VTD,
Cubs

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | April 21, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Dude, what a dork. And what is the point that Wise is trying to make? Who cares about the band wagon fans. People in DC aren't angry like people are in Philthy and New Yowk.

Posted by: ejohnsto | April 21, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

If you had been blind-folded last night and placed in the 100 level of MSG last night, you may very well have thought that you were situated in the middle of an abandoned warehouse. At times, the shouts of the players on the ice were the ONLY things you could hear. Aside from a few "a**hole" chants from NY's a**hole fans, the crowd was asleep. The sleepy Rangers fans were only out-slept by the home team, themselves.

Posted by: JLpin2win | April 21, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

So now Mike Wise is the new Mr Hockey. What a joke. I guess this is his first year in verizon center and wouldn't know that this is the loudest that stadium has ever been, including when the Caps were in the finals against the Red Wings where they got swept (which I was at).

Mike,

Before you start talking about hockey and telling real fans how to be fans, strap on a pair and take a few twirls around the rink. I can already tell you'd make a pretty good pylon for skating drills. Your a joke.

You know nothing about the game and yet you want to tell real fans how to be fans. HA. That is funny.

Maybe you should cover a team more on your level like the Nats or the Wizards. And while your down there you can study hockey so next time you come up here you might sound like you know what you are talking about when you open your mouth.

Tarik, Please take reporting on hockey away from this guy.

Posted by: CapsFan44 | April 21, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Fantastic, typically inane hockey discussion. Let's start with Mr. Wise: as a Caps fan since the early 80's I have kept my loyalty through playoff ineptitude. Sure, other cities have a cup to point to, but they aren't the fan base of team that has no championship. Do you know how much more character I have to be loyal to that kind of team? And I invite you, Mike, to give up the press pass you find so impressive and spend the money to buy season tickets to whatever team you wish, only then will I take your criticism of "real fans" seriously.

To those of you who defend the "bandwagon" fans. You're absolutely correct, any fan is a good fan. But please don't pollute the experience of those who have always been there with your obnoxious and loud faux knowledge of the game. None of you, even if you play in the beer leagues (or especially if you play in the beer leagues) can play as good as the worst of these elite players. Don't presume to give them stupid advice. You people with the families, I personally find a few f-bombs less offensive than shouts of "SHOOT!" when there are no shooting lanes (and by the way, I use curse words as an extension of my vocabulary when I am excited or upset and, guess what? I don't drink so I'm not drunk and I don't care that you have kids. In fact, your kids are the very least of my concern at a hockey game. I've raised my kids and earned the right not to have to consider children as anything more than a nuisance).

Finally, I live in Washington D.C. and am a Capitals fan in part because I don't care a whit about Boston, Buffalo, New York or any city in Canada or their fans as far as hockey goes. I'm not saying I don't respect your right to comment here, but I am saying I could care less.

Posted by: b80vin | April 21, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

how do you get that damn thing to record...has anybody replied to any of these things with video?!?!?

Posted by: deadskin | April 21, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

does anyone really care what he says?! honestly... go back to the NY times then and get off Capitals Insider.

Posted by: strkfitrsqdrn14ao | April 21, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

b80vin-
Wow, because your children are "raised", you now can use curse words as an extension of your "vocabulary" in public settings! You can "care less" about others. What a big man! What a prime example of what has gone wrong with this country the last 50 years. I've been a Caps fan since '74, but I'm sure you know more, think more, and have superior hockey intellect to the rest of us that you could "care less about". Please let us all know what section you sit in so that we can: 1. Sit nearby to absorb your knowledge -or- 2. Sit at the other end of the arena to avoid you. Thanks!

Posted by: kcbrichmond | April 21, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse

As I've said once before North American fans (even the hockey ones in NYC or Philly) are extremely well behaved compared to sports fans around the world.

When the long time US soccer goalkeeper Brad Friedel played professionally in the Turkish league he had to dodge bottles thrown at him from the stands. Good luck concentrating on the game.

In my home town of Riga, Latvia fans used to throw coins on the ice during play when an opposing team's player got a breakaway.

If you're wearing an opposing team's jersey and somehow end up in a section of rival fans at a soccer game in just about any stadium in Europe, South America or Africa having beer and peanuts thrown at you would be like being showered with love.

People simply need to remember that they're going to a sports event, not an opera (meaning that there's a high probability of ending up in a mob of drunken, rowdy blue collar types) and act accordingly. For example, if you're an away team's fan either don't wear a jersey or at the very least try to go in a group.

Posted by: ranndino | April 21, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse

@ deadskin

If you can't figure out how this works we probably don't want to hear from you.

@ kcbrichmond

I would say that it's the opposite. The problem with today's world is that people like you expect a hockey game to be some sterile environment that is safe for your precious, overprotected offspring and choose to get offended by everything. If you want to control how everyone behaves don't leave your house.

Also, this ridiculous myth that somehow the country is going down the toilet is stupid. People used to be far more rude and violent 50 years ago than they're now. It's just that now everything is publicized more because we're surrounded with sources of information.

Posted by: ranndino | April 21, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Having never been to MSG I cannot compare the two arenas. I'll admit it's on my list of places to see a game before I die. But do you really want to compare fan bases on behavior alone? New Yorkers have a persona of their own - and it comes out in their actions and attitude as fans, and I wouldn't be proud of that. After game 2 at Verizon a drunk Rangers fan smacked a Caps fan waiting in line for the john. Right out of the blue - right upside his head. Nearly every red-clad individual within distance couldn't believe it, and had it not been for three cool-headed Caps fans, this Rangers fan would have had the beatdown of his life. I would have gladly joined in. It is one thing to be loud, obnoxious, even vulgar. (See Philly fans) It is another to be just a complete ass. As much as I would love to see a game at MSG, "fans" like this guy - and the thousands of other glow-stick-throwing jerks - detract from the real point of being a fan.

Oh and Mike, that "guy sitting in the corner yelling 'LETS GO CAPS'" has been doing it for years and has got 18,277 people behind him at every game. His voice is loud enough to be heard over all of theirs. You need to wave your credentials on the internet to get anyone to hear you.

Posted by: Rainier1 | April 21, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Too all the people who say we're bandwagon fans, dumb comments all around. The Caps sucked for the last 4 years until we found a savior in Ovechkin and this team went on a ridiculous tear. The stadium is one of the most loudest and intimidating arenas in the country. Not my words. Check the press. We're also just about completely sold out in season tix. People are fans but they are not gonna shell out 60 bucks a game for a product that sucks. Take a note Redskins fans. People can still be fans though! Now they're shelling out hard earned money to see a great product.

As for you Mike,

1. Watch yourself next time you come to the phonebooth. You may have an unpleasant experience. Probably not a good idea to interview the fans.

The Garden is an awful arena. Who puts their fans in complete darkness from section 200 and up. I used to live and attend games there. I've had friends and family fall asleep cause it's so dark.

Posted by: blanknerc | April 21, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

@b80vin
"I've raised my kids and earned the right not to have to consider children as anything more than a nuisance"

That is a pretty silly thing to write.

There will always be some tension at sporting events attended by children and adults. If you cannot handle your child hearing a F-bombs, then you should stay at home; however, a non-stop stream of angry swearing is inconsiderate. Unfortunately, when you are at a game you are in public and should be respectful of others around you, which doesn't mean you have to act like a saint, just common sense respectful. If you want to act any way that you see fit, stay at home and swear at the tv. Or buy a box.

I lived for many years in NYC, and had the good fortune to attend sporting events at MSG. MSG has great atmosphere. Like the previous Yankees Stadium, the building oozes history and is usually filled with knowledgeable, vocal, passionate fans. Unfortunately, many act like serious jerks. For example, throwing bottles on the ice is really not acceptable behavior.

I lived for a few years in St. Louis, and it was a real eye opener for me in terms of fan behavior. Cardinals fans are as passionate and knowledgeable as Yankees fans are, they are just more respectful and courteous.

Posted by: CaliCapsFan | April 21, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

I disagree...that building was pretty quiet last night, well besides the boos as usual. I went up to MSG for the last Caps/Rags game (where the NYR won in a SO) and it wasn't nearly as loud as the VC. MSG was like a chill night out at the bar with some friends and there were a couple of token loud drunks there. Uninspiring is how I would describe it.

Posted by: NatyBG | April 21, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

ranndino-
Once again, let me cover. I have probably been/seen more hockey games than you have thought about in your life. (Having seen: Dave Schultz, Craig Berube, Chris Simon, etc...) Also, I have probably used a few too many curse words myself in my lifetime. Therefore, I do not expect a hockey game to be a "sterile" environment. However there is nothing wrong with expecting people in a public arena to at least have some civil decorum about them. After paying for a ticket, you should not have to endure the guy next to you cussing like a sailor the entire game, whether it be hockey, football, whatever. As far as the civility in this country being so much worse 50 years ago, I am certain that all pertinent statistics agree with you, and I will not attempt to argue, cosidering this is a hockey forum. I apologize for offending you and will keep my "precious, overprotected" offspring silent at all future Caps games so that you may curse all you want without worry. Go Caps!

Posted by: kcbrichmond | April 21, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Hey Mike Wise,
As a 28-year Caps fan at both Capital Center and Verizon Center, and as someone who has been to meaningful NHL games in Montreal, old Boston Garden, MSG, NJ, Philly, Columbus, and Raleigh,
WISE, PUT A SOCK IN IT.

Your instant-NHL-expert schtick has worn thin already. You should adopt a more humble and inquiring style, which would give you a tiny bit of credibility among those of us who actually love and follow hockey. Quit pretending you know your rear end from a Marsh peg. Please stop "reporting" on hockey. For the love of all that is holy...

Posted by: pcalver1 | April 21, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I'm a season ticket holder at MSG. We're loud when we need to be loud, we're not loud for the sake of being loud. We're also not that obnoxious....MSG is probably one of the most tolerant buildings of other fans. I watched with pride last night as a caps fan and his young son were treated very well by the folks in the section in front of me, a lot of laughing and joking going on there. A lot of the Ranger "fans" who come down to DC for Caps-Rangers are the belligerent drunk types that i think every franchise has some of and give us all a bad name. Because NYC has a lot more people than most areas, it may seem like there's more of that, but come to MSG and you'll see a lot of knowledgeable, passionate sports fans. I've been to games in Philly and have literally been scared for my safety. Remember though, NY has had 90 years of Rangers hockey to develop a knowledgeable and large hockey following. DC doesn't have that, and thats not your fault. You have a very talented and fun product out there on the ice and those who today are considered "bandwagon" fans will be tomorrow's die hard fans, so don't dismiss that. My grandfather and father were both huge Rangers fans and it is in that tradition that I am a fan, that can make a huge difference in a fan base. I don't think NYers want to compete in any loudest arena contest, we just want to root on our teams and if it gets loud, so be it. They gave out awful thundersticks last night and people were annoyed by it because we don't need thundersticks to watch our hockey team.
P.S. Don't judge me, or the average NY hockey fan based on a few drunk, stupid fans who threw stuff out on the ice last night, they really don't represent 95% of us. I'd invite you all up for a game at MSG, its a fun time (just don't come up till next year or you'll pay an arm and a leg for playoff tix right now)

Posted by: JK111 | April 21, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and another thing, and this is just food for thought, I think you guys deserve a better division. Back in the Patrick Division days, you guys were aligned with some hockey hotbeds, NY, Philly and Pittsburgh. Now you guys have Florida, TB, Atlanta? I think that also makes a difference in the level of interest, what do you all think?

Posted by: JK111 | April 21, 2009 6:15 PM | Report abuse

kcbrichmond, what has gone wrong with the country is that people like you have a logical disconnect between what you see or hear and what you think you see or hear. My use of profanity has nothing to do with raising my children and everything to do with my right to free speech. I maintain that your children are not my concern, they're YOURS. I never made my children's upbringing the responsibility of anyone else and I refuse to be responsible for the children of others. And I don't curse in public, but I reserve the right to on the odd occasion (you reading this calicapsfan?).

I also never said I was knew any more than anyone else about hockey. Indeed, my proposition was that stupidity need not loud. I sit in section 418 and by all means stay on the other side of the arena. However, if you did sit near me you would find that, apart from rooting for the caps I am too involved in the game to say much of anything, and most particularly never try to coach the team or do the refs' job. Reread to whom my remarks were addressed.

Finally, you seemed to think I dismiss others opinions or knowledge about hockey. Not so. What I DO dismiss fans of other teams trying to usurp conversations about the Caps on a Caps blog to talk about their team. If I want to hear that I'll visit Puck Daddy or some other general hockey blog. However since I have no right to ban it, I ignore it.

I hope this clarifies what I said in terms even you can't misconstrue. Even with five grand children I find children to be nothing more than a necessary nuisance, particularly the children of parents who think the world should conform to the primary goal of their children's comfort and particularly at hockey games (the kids who bounce on their seats, stand up during the game, go back and forth to the concession stand and bathroom while play is on, etc.) and I don't find that silly in the least.

Posted by: b80vin | April 21, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Throwing bottles on the ice is the way "true hockey fans behave" when they get spanked at home? ... I hope everyone boycotts your columns. I know I will.

Posted by: umdjak | April 21, 2009 9:13 PM | Report abuse

You guys are morons. For a supposedly highly educated fan base, we don't test well on the art of sarcasm.

Posted by: smallballrva | April 21, 2009 9:37 PM | Report abuse

On the contrary, smallballrva, for a supposedly legitimate news site at a specific time of the year, Wise doesn't test well on either timing or subject. He might as well have aped fellow Postian George Will and raged against denim for all the misplaced humor and pointlessness of his comments. I get that he was being the Avery of Sports commentary here, but why? He still doesn't pay for season tickets with the money from his vacation fund, nor has he sat in the cheap seats for a decade that included the "annoying" Goat in the end seats trying to make the few people in the arena realize some unity. He might have thought he was being ironic but he was merely abusing his position and its perks to have fun with the "little" guys on the outside of his, for all intents and purposes, fraternity. Once he's schlepped the two hours from Southern Maryland to the Phonebooth for every home game through good seasons and bad, I'll laugh with his good natured jokes.

Posted by: b80vin | April 21, 2009 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Wise becomes own column headline: PRETENDER

Lost in a new world media time of declining papers and budding blog-o-stars, Mikey is a lost and desparate dinosaur.

So he tries to manufacter controversy with the oldest trick in the book: TELL THE FANS THEY AREN'T GOOD ENOUGH.. Sorry Mikey, but if you were GOOD ENOUGH, you would write a full column or article about this, not a 45 sec. cheap shot... sad.
Not something a Real columnist would do, you know like one from NY or something.
WISE = PRETENDER.

Posted by: Timo17 | April 21, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

What is the point of such a video? That is the question Mike Wise should consider

Posted by: gstein101 | April 22, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Mike, you should stay at that dump they call Madison Square Garden.
Get real.
By the way, do you know anything about hockey?

Posted by: jmy999 | April 22, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

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