Saturday, March 12, 2011

Nickname Ology!

Just like other sports, Hockey players go by many names other than their own. A hockey players "nickname" is mostly different than other sports however. Especially due to the amount of long last (and first) names of many hockey players, nicknames in hockey are more important than most other sports.

Also because of the fast-play of a hockey game, announcers are forced to use one syllable to describe a player at times as opposed to using four syllables in some cases.

The Detroit Red Wings are certainly no exception to this rule.  With the large amount of Europeans on the Red Wings roster, it has become traditional when talking amongst friends, to use a players nickname instead of his (sometimes hard to pronounce) last name (or Surname). 

In general, Hockey players have very basic names as their nicknames. Much like the sport, hockey nicknames are very work-man-like, as opposed to say, Basketball players nicknames.

Many Detroit fans would remember basketball players such as "Zeke", "The Spider", "The Worm", etc...  Thankfully, these types of names generally aren't used in hockey.  Except for the very best hockey players like "The Great One", "The Captain" or "Mr. Hockey", many hockey nicknames aren't very descriptive.  In hockey, it's very difficult to earn a descriptive nickname.

Though, It's pretty easy to figure out what a hockey players nickname might be.

Usually, you can can take just a syllable of their name and add an "S", an "EY" or an "ER" and you will have a good nickname.

Example: "Dats" for Pavel Datsyuk.

Sometimes you'll run into a player that already has an "S" or "ER" or "EY" in his name, like Kris Draper.  In this situation, it's best to go with the "S".

Example: Draper becomes "Drapes".

If a player is physically bigger than most other players, you might want to add the word "Big" before his first or last name to get a players nickname.

Example:  "Big Bert" for Todd Bertuzzi or "Jumbo Joe" for San Jose forward, Joe Thornton.