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What Are Hockey Players Actually Saying?

Hockey players have a way with words that the average person wouldn’t understand. If you’ve ever been to a hockey game or hung around hockey players, you may have heard some unusual vocabulary. Words like “apple” or “lettuce” (we promise they’re not all named after food), or simpler ones like “celly,” tend to be used frequently between players. Here’s a guide to help you understand what’s being said on and off the ice. 

Courtesy of @carleyjohnstondrw via Instagram 

Apple: an assist

Bandaid: a player that’s always hurt

Boots: a pair of skates

Bottle Rocket: when a goal breaks the goalie’s water bottle that sits on top of the net

Bucket: a helmet

Biscuit: a hockey puck

Celly: the celebration after a goal or win

Chiclets: teeth

Clapper: a slapshot 

Chirp: trash talking

Duster: a player who rarely plays

(“collecting dust” on the bench)

Egg: a game that ends with a score of 0-0

Face Wash: a player sticking their glove in an opponent's face to get a rise out of them

Flamingo: when a player lifts one leg to block a shot or to make way for a puck to reach the net

Flow: long hair that can be seen from the outside of a helmet

Gino: a goal

Gongshow: an insane game with many goals, penalties or fights

Hat-trick: a player scoring three goals in one game 

(Gordie Howe hat-trick: a goal, an assist and a fight by the same player, all in one game)

Wayne Gretzky holds the record for most hat-tricks in the NHL. Wayne Gretzky and Gordie Howe courtesy of Sports

Hoser: a loser or the losing team

(the term has been used since before the invention of the Zamboni, when the losing team would hose down the ice after a game)

Kronwalled: a big hit by a defenseman

(made famous by NHL defenseman Niklas Kronwall)

Niklas Kronwall courtesy of The Detroit

Lettuce: a player’s hair

Light the Lamp: scoring a goal

(imagine the red light that goes off after a goal)

Lip Lettuce: a mustache 

Sieve: a goalie that continuously allows the other team to score

(think “full of holes”)

Sin-bin: the penalty box

Sweater: a hockey jersey

Yard Sale: when a player’s equipment goes flying off, landing all over the ice - usually after they get hit

Edited by Raegan Verhoff

Written by Bella-Rosa Fetelea

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