Justine Galo: Dear Rick Rypien…A letter from a fan.

Dear Rick Rypien:

Rick Rypien grabs Minnestoa Wild fan. Photo Credit: Sportsnet.caI 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,

Justine Galo

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.

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Comments

  1. says

    I agree, Justine, Rypien has always played on the edge, but conducted himself well when he’s off the ice. This incident might be related to team frustrations for the poor start, or perhaps to some personal matters for Rick that we don’t know about. Either way, it’s seriously uncool to collar a fan, even if that fan mouthed off at him.

    What I’d like to see is a 10-game suspension from the league, and a voluntary 10-game additional suspension from the Canucks. During that time, I’d like to see Rypien step up to apologize to the fan, Vancouver & Minnesota media, and explain why he went over the edge. If he volunteers for anger management workshops, so be it – as goofy as the guy is, Sean Avery never touched knuckles to a spectator that I know of.

    I don’t see Rypien branded for life on this, if he does the right thing. Mike Milbury climbed into the stands as a player nearly 30 years ago. Most people remember him as either a steady Bruins defenseman, a ridiculously undertalented GM, or an entertaining/frustrating hockey commentator. Now, references to him throwing a shoe are shrugged off – the nickname “Mad Mike” refers more to his crazy trades as a GM than his temper as a player. Let’s just hope Rypien does take steps to make things right, and that he limits the distractions for this already confused team.

    • Cornuck says

      Good points – and an apology should come fast – it’s already a little late.

      Comparing him to Milbury is interesting, as they’ve shown that clip (the ‘shoe’ incident) during broadcasts while he’s working and it’s all laughed off.

      Personally, I’m more concerned with how the team handles this – the NHL will find a way to screw it, so I really don’t care what they do. The Canucks have a few options that could hit harder.

      It’s never fun when a favourite player does something retarded.

  2. Cookie La Rue says

    Hi, in principle i agree with both of you but the fines should be way lower because there was no physical damage done to the fan.
    Imo it was more like a “Rypien style” hug, silly and harmless. He should get a maximum of 4 games if they want to state their power.

    ps: And he should apologize publicly to the fan in combination with a signed jersey…. hehehe.

    • Justine Galo says

      Unfortunately for Rypien and the Canucks we live in “sue you” world.

      He wasn’t hurt but who knows, technically pouring water on someone is ‘assault’ (correct me if I am wrong lawyers) these days.

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