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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 Illustrated.com


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 News.com


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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