WATCH: Flyers Fans Chant “She Said No” at Opponent Accused of Rape

Patrick Kane was accused of rape this summer. Flyers fans made sure everyone knew that at last night's game.

Last night, the Flyers played the Chicago Blackhawks in their fourth game of the season. The Flyers actually beat the defending Stanley Cup champions, 3-0. It was backup goaltender Michal Neuvirth’s second straight shutout. The Flyers are now 2-1-1.

One of the Blackhawks’ star players is Patrick Kane, who scored the Stanley Cup-winning goal against the Flyers in the 2010 Finals. In August, Kane was accused of rape. He has not been charged, and the case has played out in the media in incredibly odd ways. It remains an ongoing investigation.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has the ability to suspend Kane, but is waiting to see how it plays out. So Kane is playing. Some NHL fans have supported Kane despite the allegations. But last night, Flyers fans let Kane have it, chanting “She said no” at Kane throughout the game.

Some fans who are Kane supporters think the chant was classless, while others called it “absolutely brilliant.”

It’s not as simple as enlightened Flyers fans shedding light on alleged sexual violence versus Kane and neanderthals who think athletes should be allowed to do whatever. At Yahoo!’s Puck Daddy blog, Greg Wyshynski writes that fans of the Flyers (and Islanders, who also chanted at Kane) should maybe rethink chanting things like this.

First, he references a similar incident, when University of Oregon players were disciplined for chanting “No means no” at then-Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston (who has also been accused of rape). USA Today’s Christine Brennan wrote that “we should be pleased that they actually know the meaning and impact of the ‘No means no,’ phrase, and in their own way, shined a light on a famous man accused of rape.”

He continues:

These chants keep this scandal in the public eye at a time when the Blackhawks have swept it under the rug so vigorously that the broom’s caught fire. […] But there are probably better ways to go about that than turning a protest of Kane into “Crosby Sucks” with more provocative verbiage.

It trivializes the phrases. It belittles what any survivor of sexual assault goes through, in the sense that there’s no meaning behind what’s being chanted. It has nothing to do with the gravity of the alleged crime; it’s cheap heat against a visiting player.

In a way, Flyers fans were all doing a sports version of comedian Hannibal Buress’ Bill Cosby bit, drawing attention to a man accused of awful crimes. Wyshynski’s point makes sense, though: Is it turning “something somber into something meaningless,” as he writes? Is this just using the rape allegation for cheap heat?

Were Flyers fans chanting this because they were appalled at Kane’s alleged rape or because it was a new way to get on an opposing player they don’t like? Maybe an old fashioned boo-him-every-time-he-touches-the-puck would be a better way to go about this.

But it seems likely these chants will spread from fanbase to fanbase and continue throughout the year. Flyers fans won’t be doing them, though. Last night was Chicago’s only visit to Philadelphia this season.

[via Crossing Broad]