October 15, 2014 – 1:04 am
The American Hockey League affiliate of the Calgary Flames has — wait for it! — fired its mascot. Before even playing its first game.
The Adirondack Flames are the new Triple-A team for Calgary, though frankly we were unaware you could play at a lower level than that club. Unless you’re the Sabres. But that’s an entirely different story.
Anyway, the new team’s mascot, “Scorch” came with the storyline of being the final ember from the fire that destroyed Glens Falls, N.Y. in 1864 and re-emerged from its slumber 150 years later. That premise is already shaky in the taste department, although I suppose we are far enough removed from the event for “Too Soon?” to be applicable.
But everything went awry with Scorch’s unveiling, which was a skit that featured him killing an actor dressed up as a firefighter. Not literally, of course. But the symbolism was probably a bit strong when you consider that mascots are geared toward entertaining children.
After the understandable furor that followed, the team announced on Tuesday that Scorch is no more.
“We’re extinguishing Scorch,” team president Brian Petrovek told the Glens Falls Post-Star. “The misjudgement we made was such that we came to that decision.”
Remarkably, Scorch is not the only case of mascot malfeasance in recent weeks. Jacksonville Jaguars mascot Jaxson de Ville caught serious heat (get it?!?) when he held up a Steelers Terrible Towel along with a sign that read “Towels Carry Ebola.” Needless to say, the team issued an apology, though it likely thanked de Ville in private since he provided an effective distraction from his team’s on-field product.