Normally, hockey clubs don’t encourage fans of rival teams to attend games — let alone fly them out — but this situation was anything but normal.
There was an uproar on social media this week after Cecily Eklund was harassed at Game 3 in L.A. on Friday.
Cecily is a cancer survivor and has dedicated her life to raising money for other children dealing with the disease. Through the Ben Stelter Fund’s Magical Experience program, she was gifted the trip to L.A.
But part of the trip turned out less than magical when she was swore at and spit on during the game, according to Cecily’s mother Cathy.
Oiler Evander Kane, who calls Cecily his dear friend, brought attention to the incident on social media Tuesday.
“This type of behaviour is gross and completely unacceptable,” he wrote on Instagram.
“Grow up, and as this smart young lady always says, be kind.”
In a statement to Global News, the Kings said a staff member found the family at Game 5 on Tuesday and had “a great conversation.”
“(They) also spoke again by phone yesterday as we offered to bring them out to LA for Game 6,” said the club.
“Either way we are going to support the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation with our auction proceeds from Game 6 on Saturday,” the statement said.
Once the story had made the rounds on social media, disappointed Kings fans rallied to support Cecily’s cause, raising more than $30,000 to her Stollery donation page in less than two days, according to the Kings.
“Not all kings fans are toxic, very few of us are. That lady doesn’t represent us and we don’t claim her,” read a donation note from LAKingsTalk1199.
“Real Kings fans are rooting for you,” said a supporter that donated $25.
“We support you! Love from the Kings fanbase.”
In a tweet, the Eklund family thanked the Kings for its offer but said Cecily wasn’t feeling well and couldn’t travel. They also thanked the donors who supported her cause.