NHL

'Dumb redneck with a bad idea': Catfish tosser not one who got away

A Tennessee man is calling himself a "dumb redneck with a bad idea" after police filed charges against him for throwing a catfish onto the rink in Pittsburgh during the opening of the Stanley Cup final.

Police file charges against Tennessee man for throwing catfish onto ice in Pittsburgh

An ice worker removes a fish during the second period of Game 1 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup finals between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Nashville Predators on Monday. (Gene J. Puskar/The Associated Press)

A Tennessee man is calling himself a "dumb redneck with a bad idea" after police filed charges against him for throwing a catfish onto the rink in Pittsburgh during the opening of the Stanley Cup final.

Police say 36-year-old Jacob Waddell threw the dead fish over the glass surrounding the rink on Monday night during the Nashville Predators-Pittsburgh Penguins game.

He was ejected and charged with disorderly conduct, possessing instruments of crime — in this case, the fish — and disrupting meetings or processions.

Waddell, of Nolensville, told Nashville radio station WGFX-FM that he came up with the idea ahead of a trip to see relatives in Ohio.

He said that "like an ignorant redneck, I thought, `Wouldn't it be awesome to throw a catfish on the ice at this game?"'

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry released a statement asking that "any charges for throwing a catfish on to the ice would be quickly dismissed."

Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto suggested in a statement that Waddell perform community service as punishment — "perhaps cleaning fish at Wholey's," a prominent fish market in the city.

The Penguins won the game 5-3. Game 2 is Wednesday.

Hockey has a long tradition of objects being thrown on the ice, usually in affection like when fans toss hats to mark hat tricks. There are odd offerings, too, including the time-honoured tradition of Detroit Red Wings fans throwing octopi during the playoffs.

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