Red Wings prospect Givani Smith posted a Tweet from “Herrle’s Farm Market” of all places, and it sounds like undignified fan behavior took place during last night’s Kitchener Rangers-Sarnia Sting game (in which Smith scored a goal and added an assist in Kitchener’s 5-3 win):
So proud of the @OHLRangers last night against the @StingHockey the boys raised their level of play above taunting and racism against @givanismith24 yes, we saw it… It was disgraceful, you raised your level of play and out-classed the haters. Well done Givani! 👍
— Herrle’s Farm Market (@HerrlesMarket) April 13, 2018
I don’t have any further details regarding last night’s incident, and to say the least, racist taunts are just disgusting and unacceptable…
And instead, the London Free Press’s Ryan Pyette reports that Smith played great hockey last night:
The Sting have a major Givani Smith headache right now. There isn’t enough Tylenol in the world to make him go away.
The Kitchener power forward threw his team on his back in the third period Thursday, turning a tied contest to the Rangers favour with a late goal and assist to wrestle back home-ice advantage with a 5-3 Game 4 victory before 4,289 Thursday at Progressive Auto Sales Arena. The best-of-seven OHL Western Conference semifinal is tied 2-2.
“He’s a big man,” Sarnia associate coach David Legwand said of Smith. “He can make plays down there (in the offensive zone). I thought we did a good job in the series so far (against him). Obviously tonight didn’t go the way we wanted. The first four games don’t mean anything now. Go to Kitch and win a hockey game (Friday).”
Sting centre Drake Rymsha, drilled from behind by Smith on his opening shift, tried to go after him at the final buzzer. Smith had everyone riled up, as usual. If you’re looking for him, he’s usually parked right in front of Sting goalie Justin Fazio, jabbing at him with his stick.
“He loves it,” Kitchener coach Jay McKee said. “I wish he enjoyed it less. We had the refs come over and talk to us about him many times — just stuff in between whistles. My response is that’s what we traded for. We wanted an energy guy who gets in the heads of other guys and he plays hard.”
McKee and Sarnia coach Derian Hatcher spent most of their hockey careers trying to stop players like Smith. It’s emotionally, mentally and physically draining.
“He can wear you down, especially junior (d-men) because of how he’s built,” McKee said. “We saw him a lot when he played with Guelph and our guys didn’t enjoy playing against him.”