Picture property of Paramount Pictures.
After the Boston Bruins defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-0 in Game 6 Monday to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals, the Bruins announced that they were hiring Boston native Norm Peterson as an honorary mascot.
“We’re facing the Carolina Hurricanes in the Conference Finals,” Bruins General Manager Don Sweeney told reporters. “They have that Hamilton pig as their sort of good luck charm, so we decided to get our own to cancel theirs out.”
“I’ve been told that it’s the Year of the Pig,” Sweeney continued, “and the closest thing we could find to a pig was Peterson.”
Peterson, best known as a longtime patron of the Boston bar Cheers, said he was excited about the opportunity.
“I mean, it’s cool,” Peterson said. “I get into Bruins games for free, and they’re going to show me on the Jumbotron just before the puck drops.”
“It beats hanging out with Vera, and the Bruins agreed to pay off my bar tab at Cheers.”
Not everyone was pleased with the announcement, however, as GLAAD slammed Peterson’s hiring as a “massive disappointment.”
“There was that one episode of Cheers where Mr. Peterson tried to get a few men kicked out of the bar simply because he thought they were gay,” GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said during a press conference.
“He has demonstrated a consistently hostile attitude towards LGBTQ individuals, and it’s sad that the Bruins would go so far as to associate with Mr. Peterson in any way.”
Peterson explained that the event in question was a long time ago.
“Years ago, I was afraid that Cheers might turn into a gay bar,” Peterson said, “but not because I have a problem with gays or lesbians or anyone else, I just didn’t want anyone bringing ferns in the bar.”
“I don’t like ferns.”
Game 1 of the Bruins-Hurricanes series will take place in the TD Garden in Boston on Thursday at 8 pm.