Despite a natural geographical disadvantage (they’re in Canada) and, furthermore, having a name like Les Canadiens – the Montreal Canadiens managed to crack GQ’s list of The Worst Sports Fans in America.
The Canadiens are in good company, though. GQ’s slideshow/list features fans of the most universally disliked, yet historically successful, sports franchises and college programs in
North America. Also included are fans of such despised teams like the Los Angeles Lakers, New York Yankees, Duke Blue Devils, Dallas Cowboys, and Oakland Raiders. The moniker bestowed upon the Habs faithful is “Frozen Hooligans” which, compared to the Raiders’ “Criminals” and the Yankees’ “Satan’s Chosen Team”, isn’t so bad.
GQ’s Adam Winer on Montreal Canadiens fans:
Forget the riots that erupted last May after the Canadiens made it to the Eastern Conference final; they were nothing compared with the hordes of looters who set fire to five police cars during the 2008 playoffs simply because Montreal advanced past the first round. Meanwhile, inside the Bell Centre, the only things people boo more frequently than the U.S. national anthem are their own players. In 2003, team veteran Patrice “Breeze-by” Brisebois was heckled almost every time he touched the puck; the jeering was so intense it likely induced a stress-related irregular heartbeat. How did then GM Bob Gainey feel about his bloodthirsty fan base? “I think they’re a bunch of gutless bastards, to be honest,” he said.
The Canadiens were the only hockey team esteemed(?) enough to have its fans crack GQ’s list.
Controversy is commonplace for the Canadiens and their fans. Thursday night’s slashing incident between P.K. Subban and Tampa’s Vincent Lecavalier prompted The Globe and Mail’s Sean Gordon to explore the notion of the Canadiens as the NHL’s most hated team. With a playoff spot ostensibly guaranteed, it won’t be long before we get another glimpse of the destructive nature of Habs fans (also a guarantee).