Dear Rick Rypien:
I just wanted say that I am a fan. I think that every NHL team could use a “Rick Rypien” on their roster, but I am glad you’re a Vancouver Canuck. Despite the aforementioned statement, I am heartily disappointed in your actions during the game against the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday, October 19, 2010. Although I understand that things heat up on the ice during energized moments, your actions against a fan were not warranted. Even if they were, you are a professional, and you shouldn’t have taken your aggression out on that fan.
I hope you are suspended and fined, I hope that the NHL comes down on you just enough to show that laying your hands on a fan is an absolute no-no. Rick, if you were pissed off, you could have easily just gone to the dressing room and messed up all your sticks. I don’t care, break them over your legs, break them over your head, but you should never shove an official and/or a fan.
I was truly shocked to see that come from you. It’s been known you’re usually pretty good with taking the penalties and owning up to your actions. Although you were in a visiting arena, I’d like you to know, that fan, the one that you shoved, pays part of the salary of the Minnesota Wild players, and indirectly yours as well. You are a PROFESSIONAL player, and you should have conducted yourself as one.
I hope this incident doesn’t not get blown out of proportion. I believe members of the media will make you look like a monster. Some might even say you have absolutely no business being in the NHL, but it would be great for you to prove them wrong. I also know that Rick Rypien is a fine hockey player who knows his role, does his work in the community and for the most part is a ‘nice guy’.
Let’s hope you and anyone one else in the league who has any intentions of retaliating on fans learns a lesson from this. Don’t bite the hands that feed you, even if they, at times, taunt you and mock you. You’re paid to play hockey, not paid to act like a thug.
A Canucks fan,
Footnote: I have met Rick Rypien on a few occasions, and through my interactions with him and some of his team members, I cannot tell you how disappointed I am about this whole situation. His attitudes towards myself and others in the public of not conducive to his recent actions in Minnesota.