June 5, 2017 / 10:28 PM / 2 years ago

NHL: Nashville coach asks fans to stop tossing catfish on ice

May 28, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Nashville Predators head coach Peter Laviolette gestures at Predators practice during media day before the start of the 2017 Stanley Cup Final at PPG PAINTS Arena. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

(The Sports Xchange) - Like any good fisherman, Nashville Predators coach Peter Laviolette doesn’t want to think about the big one that got away — and he reminded the team’s fans of that point.

Hours before the Predators were set to host the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final, Laviolette on Monday asked Nashville fans to refrain from throwing catfish on the ice via a video posted on the team’s official website.

Fans tossed five catfish onto the ice at Bridgestone Arena, as they are known to do, during the Predators’ 5-1 victory in Game 3 that narrowed their best-of-seven series deficit to 2-1.

A Nashville fan also heaved a dead catfish onto the ice in the waning stages of Game 1 at Pittsburgh.

Laviolette’s message to the home crowd was basically a preemptive strike to prevent the officiating crew from tagging his team with a delay-of-game penalty for having to wait for a clean-up of the popular southern fish.

“Hey everyone, showing good sportsmanship is part of being good citizens of Smashville. That means not throwing anything on the ice, putting both our players and the officials in danger,” Laviolette said in the video.

“Help us secure our home-ice advantage and prevent us from being penalized for unnecessary reasons. Please don’t throw anything on the ice and thank you for being the best fans in the National Hockey League.”

Backed by their raucous home fans, the Predators are 8-1 in the postseason at Bridgestone Arena.

Editing by Larry Fine

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