Rangers Fan Assaulted After Classic, Culprit Steps Forward

It’s seems like the events after Monday’s Winter Classic, a 3-2 win by the New York Rangers over the Philadelphia Flyers has gotten more media attention than the game itself. First, head coach John Tortorella‘s remarks about the awful officiating that led to a $30,000 fine, followed by the sad news that a Rangers fan from New Jersey was assaulted by a group of Flyers fans outside a steak shack.

According to the New York Post, the fan, Neal Auricchio Jr, suffered a concussion and is recovering in the hospital. The 30-year-old drove down to Philadelphia with a friend to take in the game, and was brutally beaten and sucker-punched outside Geno’s Steaks following the Rangers victory.

“He’s in pretty tough shape,” said his father, Neal Sr.  “He got beat up pretty bad.” The younger Auricchio is a former U.S. Marine who served two tours in Iraq, earning a Purple Heart. He is a four-year veteran of Woodbridge.

The attack was caught on camera and shows two groups of fans arguing and shoving before the altercations escalated to blows.

Auricchio Sr. is urging those who did this to come forward. “you did the wrong thing, now do the right thing and take your punishment,” he said.

It has appeared to work, as Edward Neary came forward Wednesday admitting to taking part in the assault. He wrote on his Facebook “it was me and my friends do something about it,” followed by a homophobic slur. His page has since been deleted, but it is believed Neary is about 20-years-old.

He blamed the brawl on three of his friends, whom he identified, though he claimed the Rangers fans started the melee.

Absolutely disgusting display. I’m obviously biased, but based on the video it’s hard to argue who is at fault here. The Flyers fans begin throwing punches and rain punches and kicks on the Rangers fans on the floor. When he is finally able to come to his feet, he is sucked punched and really left for dead by the Flyers fans. 

This is why everyone hates Philadelphia — except for It’s Always Sunny.

Hopefully the injuries aren’t too debilitating and the cop makes a full recovery. Glad to see the thugs will most likely pay for this and don’t get off scott-free.

Follow Matt on Twitter @MattCalamia

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