Anyone who follows hockey (or any sport for that matter) knows that there are euphemisms that announcers and fans will use. You’ll hear that a player is a veteran presence in the locker room—because saying they just signed an old guy would sound bad. You’ll hear that a guy “plays on the edge” when they really could just as easily say “he’s usually dirty, but it’s OK because he’s on our team.” It’s just a nicer way of saying the truth. They’re code words, if you will…
In the interest of helping hockey fans enjoy these game “extras”, we thought we’d lay down some of the more obscure code words that are out there around the league. There’s a good chance you know some of them—but you might even find a few that you didn’t know existed. We’re here to help…
What You’ll Hear: Joe Thornton is a bad-ass.
What It Means: It’s November.
What You’ll Hear: Just because it didn’t work in the past, doesn’t mean it won’t work now.
What It Means: Olli Jokinen might be a good fit for the Calgary Flames.
What You’ll Hear: “We have complete confidence in Sergei Bobrovsky…”
What It Means: “Nothing’s changed here… we still don’t think we need a goaltender.”
What You’ll Hear: There’s no problem with signing a goaltender to at 15-year contract.
What It Means: When people are scrambling for a goalie in 2020, we’ll be covered.
What You’ll Hear: Our team has a lot of potential.
What It Means: Don’t mind the fact that we suck, we really hope this other guy we have will be good one day. Because we need him to be good.
What You’ll Hear: The Cup is coming to Toronto this year!
What It Means: The Cups official home is in the Hockey Hall of Fame—located in Toronto, ON.
What You’ll Hear: NO GOAL.
What It Means: 11 years ago a team came into our home and won the Stanley Cup on our ice. And we’re still bitter.
What You’ll Hear: They’re very good along the boards.
What It Means: They’re slow. And big. But mostly slow.
What You’ll Hear: The flu has been going around the locker room.
What It Means: Alcohol poisoning.
What You’ll Hear: They’re rebuilding.
What It Means: They suck. And they’ll suck for the rest of the year. Maybe even next year. Guaranteed.
What You’ll Hear: Rick Nash is the best player on the Blue Jackets!
What It Means: I can’t name another player on the Blue Jackets!
What You’ll Hear: The shootout is awesome!
What It Means: We just won the skills competition and got the extra point for NOTHING resembling a hockey game!
What You’ll Hear: (Adversely) The shootout sucks!
What It Means: Effing Vesa Toskala
What You’ll Hear: The ownership has deep pockets…
What It Means: You are SOOOO screwed Dallas Stars fans. (Alt definition: Anyone but Tom Hicks.)
What You’ll Hear: Kovalchuk FTW!
What It Means: Creatively displacing salaries since 2010 (through 2025).
What You’ll Hear: Their fans used colorful language.
What It Means: I hate playing in Philadelphia.
What You’ll Hear: They cleared a ton of cap space this season.
What It Means: Their AHL affiliate has a HUGE payroll.
What You’ll Hear: Goalies need to fight through traffic to see the puck.
What It Means: Our defense is atrocious and I’m tired of calling them out. I need a new scapegoat.
What You’ll Hear: Ron Wilson’s job is 100% safe.
What It Means: We’re currently looking for a replacement and will fire Wilson as soon as we have someone else lined up.
What You’ll Hear: Blindside hit to the head.
What It Means: I’m sorry, what? I forgot what you said…