It is playoff time in Nashville, and the Nashville Predators and Bridgestone Arena are unveiling a catfish tank to celebrate the occasion.
For Predators fans, throwing catfish onto the ice has been a long tradition, and that will now be acknowledged with this touch at Bridgestone Arena. Beginning with the NHL Playoffs, Bridgestone Arena will display a catfish tank near sections 117 and 118.
The first catfish has already been unveiled, with the tank to accommodate four fish. Four was chosen for a reason, as it is also the same number of wins needed in each round of the postseason to advance to the next series. More from the AP:
Team President Sean Henry unveiled the new tank hours before the Predators opened the NHL postseason against Colorado in their first-round Western Conference series. The team put the first of four catfish into the tank and No. 2 was on the way.
”Good symbolism with those four catfish,” Henry said. ”Four wins per series, four series gets you to the ultimate prize.”
The Predators named the first catfish Gill and the second fish will be named Ben in honor of a longtime fan that died in 2017.
Here is a look at the catfish in action, via the Predators’ Twitter account:
— p-Nashville Predators (@PredsNHL) April 11, 2018
It should be noted that the catfish are meant to stay in the tank, so they are not options for fans who decide to partake in the tradition of hurling the fish onto the ice. As the AP explains in its story, that tradition is believed to have its origins in the late 1990’s, as the owner of a restaurant near the arena is reported hurled to have a catfish onto the ice on January 26, 1999, when the Predators were hosting the Detroit Red Wings.