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Thrashers Fans Hold Final Tailgate Outside Philips Arena, Set Thing On Fire

Atlanta Thrashers fans had a Saturday event in honor of their team that was once called a rally but has since become more commonly known as a "tailwake." Attendance was a major item of concern for ... well, mostly for people with little to no stake in the actual outcome of the team's very likely relocation to Winnipeg.

The tone was celebratory and lighthearted, though with plenty of anger directed at the Atlanta Spirit Group and Gary Bettman.

We've been guessing there are at least a couple of hundred fans at the Gulch outside Philips Arena, though people have been coming and going and I'm not an expert. You can make what you want of our estimates. We'd like to see thousands, but the team is essentially already gone anyway, so most seem satisfied with turnout.

Here's a video I shot of some of the crowd, including a couple Thrashers fans burning a makeshift Winnipeg Jets banner that had been put up by beloved Atlanta sports troll J.K. Sockey. This stunt did not involve everybody present, and it was just a few seconds out of a four-hour tailgate that was otherwise spent on jokes, stories, music, cornhole, beer and grilling. Quite a few complained about it, and it will probably offend those of you with stomachs weak enough to be turned by the sight of a sheet being ruined for fun in a parking lot. 

Photos and more video to come later.

Post written by Jason Kirk; all uses of I are his.

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Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.