Coyotes CEO confirms fan had part of their finger bitten off in wild brawl

Several Bruins and Coyotes fans lost their minds during a wild brawl at Mullett Arena this weekend, but one apparently lost part of their finger, too. (Screen grab via Twitter/Pete Blackburn)
Several Bruins and Coyotes fans lost their minds during a wild brawl at Mullett Arena this weekend, but one apparently lost part of their finger, too. (Screen grab via Twitter/Pete Blackburn)

It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye.

Well, how about a digit?

That appears to be exactly what happened on Friday as a fan — later identified by local authorities as Steven Rocha — lost a fingertip amid a wild brawl during the Bruins-Coyotes clash. Rocha was immediately transported to a hospital for treatment, police said.

Coyotes CEO Xavier Gutierrez confirmed the report on Monday when asked by local reporters at the NHL’s Board of Governors meetings in Florida — a question he likely didn’t enjoy answering.

The altercations began in the stands of Mullett Arena around 9:30 pm, according to Arizona State University police, although it remains unclear what started the melee. Nashaknik Allen Shontz was charged on suspicion of aggravated assault after allegedly biting the tip of Rocha’s finger.

Local officials also cited five other individuals for disorderly conduct before releasing them. Two other fans were injured during the brawl, but neither of their conditions was considered life-threatening.

As seen in the video posted by Bally Sports’ Pete Blackburn, several fans began fighting each other before police jumped in, with the situation continuing to boil over afterwards. As officers attempted to diffuse the brawl, one fell over multiple stands while trying to pull someone out of the scrum. A man even appears to knock down a woman with a clean punch at one point in the video. Just complete and utter chaos.

On the ice, the Coyotes defeated the Bruins 4-3 with a late goal from Lawson Crouse, who notched the game-winner at the 19:46 mark of the third period. Arizona followed that up by securing a 5-4 overtime victory over Philadelphia on Sunday.

The team plans to remain at the 5,000-seat Arizona State University arena for several seasons until a new one is built, which they hope is part of a new entertainment district on city-owned land at the west end of Tempe Town Lake.

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