Down in front! Why U.S. hockey fans aren’t happy with this Leafs fan, or his head

After watching his beloved team lose a closely fought Game 6 to the Boston Bruins, a Toronto Maple Leafs Fan opened his phone to find an unexpected photo of the action: one obscured by the back of own head.

“I looked on Instagram and I was at the top of my feed,” said Scott, whose last name is being protected due to perceived online threats — online, some have said: “off with his head.” 

“I sent the photo to my girlfriend and I said, ‘it kind of looks like it might be my head,'” he said during an interview on CBC News Network on Tuesday. 

It was.

Just ask the thousands of U.S. television viewers who missed some of the final dramatic moments of Sunday’s game because of it, or, those who have had some fun by using Scott’s head to block out famous moments from history (see the video below.)

A Toronto Maple Leafs fan whose head obscured key moments Sunday’s Game 6 against the Boston Bruins says he didn’t know he was blocking the action for thousands of U.S. viewers. 5:33

Angry Bruins fans (most Canadian viewers had a clear view thanks to the Sportsnet/CBC feed) and even the actor Rob Lowe were among those who took to Twitter to complain about the obstructed view.

NBC blames technical difficulties, not Scott

Scott was sitting just two rows in front of the cameras at Scotiabank Arena during Sunday’s game, he said.

When he stood  to take in the action during the frantic third period, his head blocked a fairly large portion of the ice near the Boston goal — although he had no idea what was happening. 

“I didn’t know that my head was in the middle of the TV,” Scott said. “The guy next to me is standing too but he’s a full foot shorter than me and you’d have no idea.”

Scott also adds that despite what many online have claimed, his head is not abnormally large.

NBC, which broadcast the game in the U.S., explained the glitch to the Boston Globe, saying that technical difficulties forced the network to switch to a replacement camera during the third period.

“The replacement camera had a slightly different perspective,” an NBC spokesperson said.

Hockey writer Greg Wyshynski suggested the name “head-o-vision” for the unusual perspective.

Scott said most of the online reaction has been lighthearted, though some of the comments verge on cyber-bullying. And while most angry viewers would only recognize him from behind, Scott said he’s not interested in going to Boston for Game 7 after he and his head were bombarded with online vitriol.

“I would be scared, doing that,” he said.

Instead, he said he’ll watch the game at home or maybe at a downtown bar.

Scott confirmed to CBC News that he would be sitting during the action.

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