What's your name? With hockey's culture of nicknames, the possibilities are endless

  • Article by: NANCY ARMOUR , AP National Writer
  • Updated: June 21, 2013 - 4:55 PM

CHICAGO — The best names in the NHL are the ones that never make the roster.

Or get used by Mom.

Tazer. Little Ball of Hate. The Great One. Sid the Kid. Looch (who also goes by Gino). The Bulin Wall. Kells.

"There's always someone, or a few guys, that want to call you different things," said Chicago Blackhawks left wing Brandon Saad, dubbed "The ManChild" by his teammates. "I guess it's just part of the camaraderie of the sport and the guys being close. I'm not really sure of the exact science."

Anyone who has ever played a sport knows that nicknames are part of the game, a byproduct of both competition and camaraderie. But hockey players have taken it to an art form.

From the littlest mite to the NHL's biggest stars, everyone's got a moniker — and usually more than one. Most are simplistic, involving the addition or subtraction of a letter or two. Shorten a last name, tack on an 's' or a 'y' ('ie' also works) and, voila! Instant nickname. Patrice Bergeron becomes "Bergy." Brent Seabrook is "Seabs" or "Seabsy."

If a player's last name only has one syllable, just add an 'r' or a 'y' (the 'ie' rule applies here, as well). Patrick Kane is now forever known as "Kaner," while Patrick Sharp, his occasional partner on Chicago's second line, is "Sharpie."

And anyone whose last name is Campbell is automatically "Soup" or "Soupy."

"Pretty boring," said Boston Bruins center Chris Kelly, who is known as, you guessed it, "Kells." ''I wish we came up with cooler nicknames."

But the beauty of the simplicity is in its versatility. It can be applied to almost any name, regardless of nationality.

Jaromir Jagr? Jags. Alex Ovechkin? Ovie. Marty Turco? Turks.

It even works with Bruins left wing Kaspars Daugavins.

"We call him Doggie," Kelly said.

But just as there are exceptions to every grammatical rule, there are some names that defy the conventions of hockey nicknamification. Or lend themselves to some added creativity.

Blackhawks right wing Jamal Mayers is "Jammer" — not to be confused with Chicago defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson, who is "Hammer." Edmonton goalie Nikolai Khabibulin is "The Bulin Wall." Henrik Lundqvist, he of the 2012 Vezina Trophy, seven straight 30-win seasons and Olympic gold medal in 2006, is, simply, King Henrik.

Other monikers come about because of something a player does on the ice.

Hall of Famer Max Bentley was known as the "Dipsy Doodle Dandy from Delisle" because of his silky-smooth style of evading opponents. Steve Yzerman thought Johan Franzen looked like "a mule" whizzing around the ice as a rookie back in 2005. The nickname stuck. Phoenix enforcer Paul Bissonnette is "BizNasty."

And some nicknames just happen.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 1 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Arrieta 4
Houston - WP: T. Sipp 5 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: C. Allen 1
San Francisco - WP: T. Hudson 10 FINAL
Washington - LP: D. Fister 3
St. Louis - LP: A. Wainwright 4 FINAL
Philadelphia - WP: K. Kendrick 5
Chicago WSox - LP: D. Webb 3 FINAL
NY Yankees - WP: D. Robertson 4
Tampa Bay - WP: D. Smyly 8 FINAL
Toronto - LP: M. Stroman 0
Atlanta - WP: D. Hale 3 FINAL
Cincinnati - LP: M. Parra 1
Seattle - WP: D. Leone 5 FINAL
Boston - LP: K. Uehara 3
Kansas City - WP: Y. Ventura 6 FINAL
Texas - LP: C. Lewis 3
Pittsburgh - WP: J. Locke 8 FINAL
Milwaukee - LP: Y. Gallardo 3
Detroit - LP: R. Ray 6 FINAL
Minnesota - WP: R. Pressly 20
Miami - WP: H. Alvarez 13 FINAL
Colorado - LP: F. Morales 5
San Diego - LP: O. Despaigne 1 FINAL
Arizona - WP: J. Collmenter 5
LA Angels - LP: J. Grilli 3 FINAL
Oakland - WP: S. Gray 5
NY Mets - LP: J. Niese 2 FINAL
Los Angeles - WP: D. Haren 6
Carolina 7 FINAL
New England 30
NY Giants 35 FINAL
NY Jets 24
Jacksonville 12 FINAL
Detroit 13
Oakland 21 FINAL
Green Bay 31
Chicago 6 FINAL
Seattle 34
Tampa Bay 3:30 PM
Buffalo
Tennessee 6:00 PM
Atlanta
Dallas 6:00 PM
Miami
Washington 6:30 PM
Baltimore
New Orleans 7:00 PM
Indianapolis
Minnesota 7:00 PM
Kansas City
St. Louis 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Houston 8:00 PM
Denver
San Diego 8/24/14 3:00 PM
San Francisco
Cincinnati 8/24/14 7:00 PM
Arizona
Atlanta 8/28/14 5:00 PM
Jacksonville
Detroit 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Indianapolis 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Kansas City 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Green Bay
NY Jets 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
St. Louis 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 8/28/14 6:30 PM
Pittsburgh
New England 8/28/14 6:30 PM
NY Giants
Washington 8/28/14 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Baltimore 8/28/14 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Denver 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Dallas
Minnesota 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Tennessee
San Francisco 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Houston
Arizona 8/28/14 9:00 PM
San Diego
Seattle 8/28/14 9:00 PM
Oakland
(21) Texas A&M 8/28/14 5:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Wake Forest 8/28/14 6:00 PM
ULM
Boise State 8/28/14 7:00 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Tulane 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Temple 8/28/14 8:15 PM
Vanderbilt
Rutgers 8/28/14 9:00 PM
Washington St
Weber State 8/28/14 9:30 PM
(19) Arizona State
BYU 8/29/14 6:00 PM
Connecticut
(6) Jacksonville St 8/29/14 6:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Bowling Green 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Houston
Colorado State 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Colorado
UNLV 8/29/14 9:30 PM
Arizona
UCF 8/30/14 7:30 AM
Penn State
Real Salt Lake 1 FINAL
FC Dallas 2
Montreal 16 FINAL
Winnipeg 24
Toronto 3:00 PM
Edmonton
Calgary 8/24/14 2:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 8/24/14 6:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Ottawa 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Montreal
Winnipeg 8/31/14 2:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Chicago 80 FINAL
Atlanta 77
Los Angeles 72 FINAL
Phoenix 75
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close