PuckDaddy- Tony X. sprang into popularity this year as the newest fan to the great sport of hockey and more specifically the St. Louis Blues. He was so popular (by NHL standards) that he was asked to attend to the NHL Awards in Las Vegas as a guest of the League.
At 5:19am PT time, Mr. X tweeted out a picture of a Southwest ticket.
Sources close to the event were under the impression that Tony X's flight was cancelled. The same sources have been unsuccessful at getting in contact with Tony X today at all. They don't know if he made it to Vegas.
On the broadcast, host Will Arnett and model Erin Heatherton spoke of Tony's absence and introduced the hashtag #TONYMIA. Many assumed at first it was some joke by the producers of the show and Tony X would emerge at some point.
UPDATE (11 a.m. on Thursday):
“Missed my original flight out of St. Louis at 6 a.m. Next flight they could put me on that had with seats wasn’t until 1:55 a.m. getting into Vegas at 3:30 p.m. [which was] was minutes. before the show. So I left drove home after a few hours, went to sleep and overslept that flight so basically I [expletived] up. Didn’t even make it to Vegas. Terrible day. I feel terrible. Sorry everyone”
Ha! Missed his flight, huh? I guess people believe anything these days. Okay fine, that's a patently false statement. However, it is apparent that the exceedingly white hockey community - that was desperate to use it's token black twitter fan to fill airtime - will believe anything these days. Hand me the tinfoil hat if you so choose, but who many people do you know that have missed a free flight to Las Vegas, never mind TWO free flights to Las Vegas? I know plenty of drunkards that have missed flights HOME from Vegas, but no one is cutting it close when they have an all expenses paid trip to Sin City. Well, no one except the guy that has basically become a show pony for the NHL.
I'll tell you exactly what happened here. Tony X. was sitting at the airport - ticket in hand - about to board a plane to quite possibly the most boring award show there is, and he had a flashback to how he was treated when he was gifted a ticket to a St. Louis Blues game. He thought about having to look down at his seat to make sure there wasn't a camera there before sitting down. His name incessantly flashing up on the JumboTron like he was a circus act. The obnoxious amount of interview requests. The way he couldn't take a piss without someone offering to hold his dick. That's when it hit him...
That free trip to Vegas sounded all well and good when he accepted it, but the inevitable attention he would have gotten as an average guy ( that just so happens to be funny and black) sitting in a fairly tame crowd would have been a goddamn nightmare. The NHL - and specifically the Blues - were able to make a spectacle of Tony X. when he was at a playoff game for Christ sake. How much worse do you think it would have been if he were sitting in the audience as a bunch of awards - whose recipients were all but a forgone conclusion - were given out and a bunch of Dad jokes were being made? I don't want to make any animal/black people comparisons, but he basically would have been the human equivalent of the lion that walks around inside the glass enclosure as MGM.
Listen, I loved the guy's tweets just as much as everyone else did. I appreciated gaining another hockey fan too - especially when that fan happens to African American. That said, can the NHL act like they've been there before? Yeah, when I say "they" I DO mean black people, and when I say "there" I do mean a hockey game. Nothing makes a person not want to show up like badgering them to show up, and nothing makes a normal dude feel more awkward than gaining an unforeseen amount of notoriety based solely off the color of his skin. At this point Tony X. is like the NHL's version of the albino alligator that gets it's own tank at the zoo simply because it looks different. Has the exact same expression too...