San Jose Sharks under fire for implementing Ice Girls

QMI AGENCY

, Last Updated: 7:03 PM ET

What wears spandex, a crop top and has hockey fans enraged?

The answer: “Ice Girls,” the scantily clad, shovel-wielding women who clean the ice during timeouts.

The idea isn’t new. Ice Girls are prevalent throughout the National Hockey League.

But as one San Jose columnist wrote, it’s not the best decision to alter your ice-cleaning team following an embarrassing playoff exit at the hands of the Los Angeles Kings.

After going 3-0 up on the Kings earlier this year, the Sharks dropped four straight to bomb out of the post-season.

Since the Sharks announced plans to implement an “Ice Team" for the upcoming season, the online outrage has been marked, with fans telling their front office to worry about building a competent squad instead of trotting out props.

"This has nothing to do with the playoff performance," Sharks CEO John Tortora told the Mercury News. "If our performance in the playoffs was good or bad, we would be going ahead with some of these initiatives we want to implement."

A majority (21) of NHL teams use “Ice Girls” to clean the playing surface during breaks in the action.

The Toronto Maple Leafs recently joined the fold of teams using the new form of in-game entertainment.

There are a handful of teams, however, that still prefer to use skaters in traditional sweat suits rather than their sexy counterparts.

"Our first priority is finding people who can skate and do a good job of cleaning the ice," Tortora told the Mercury. "We also want people who can represent the team in the community. We've had around 130 applicants so far, probably split 50-50 between males and females."

Members of the Sharks community have even created a Facebook page entitled “Say NO To Sharks Ice Girls” in an effort to keep the Shark Tank traditional.


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