A Bender's Dictionary: Hockey Slang You May or May Not Know

Andy KulaszewskiContributor IIAugust 18, 2011

A Bender's Dictionary: Hockey Slang You May or May Not Know

0 of 22

    Hockey is hands down the coolest game on earth (thank you, Nagano Olympics) and with that title, hockey has developed its own language among players and fans.

    Whether you are a stage one bender or a seasoned vet, here are some important hockey slang terms that any hockey player or fan should get familiar with.


1 of 22

    This is a word that has a couple of meanings to it and has been recently reestablished by gongshow gear, a line of hockey apparel.

    Gongshow Gear defines gongshow as:

    1. A lifestyle defined and perfected by hockey players; 2. Passion for the game on the ice combined with a love for the party off the ice; 3. A unique code of ethics shared amongst hockey players that is widely unknown to others; 4. The biggest underground hockey fraternity in the world.

    Example: Lovin' this gongshow, our game is going to be crazy Saturday but not nearly as crazy as the afterparty!

    Many others refer to gongshow in its original meaning which is a hockey game that has gotten out of control with ridiculous fights, goals or other crazy events.

    Example: Did you see that gongshow last night? There was a bench-clearing brawl and this puck bunny got thrown out for flashing a guy in the penalty box!

Puck Bunny

2 of 22

    A puck bunny is often defined as an attractive lady who hangs out at ice rinks trying to get players' attention for their own "benefit" rather than coming to watch the hockey game. They often love the sport of hockey and love the players even more.

    Example: Dude, after I scored that natural hatty I took that puck bunny back to the party and got crazy!


3 of 22

    A bender is widely-used term for players who are terrible at skating and look as if their skates aren't tied tight enough because their ankles bend when they stand on them.

    No offense to Holmstrom as he is great at doing what he does and has been for the better part of a decade, but he is a terrible skater and looks like he needs his mom to tie his skates tighter for him.

    Example: That bender looks like his ankles are going to snap under his own weight, he needs to get off the ice before I dangle him.


4 of 22

    A dangler is a player who can just dangle the opposition. A dangle is much like a deke but more than just a head fake, the player must embarrass the opposing player by moving the puck in and around the opposing player with his stick—almost "dangling" the puck in front of him.

    Example: Oh man, Datsyuk is such a dangler! Did you see him dangle Turco last night on that breakaway!

Toe Drag

5 of 22

    A toe drag is a fairly new move which consists of holding the puck out on a players forehand to tempt the defenseman and when the D makes a move for the puck, the offensive player then uses the "toe" of his stick to pull the puck backwards and then towards him to walk around the D.

    When used effectively, it can make defense look like a pylon.

    Notorious toe-draggers are often known as "danglers".

    Example: That toe drag was so sick, you made the defenseman look like a bender.


6 of 22

    The term 'duster' is referring to a player who sits on the bench and collects dust, only played when a team is up by a lot of goals just so he can get some playing time. Often, the duster is used to separate the offense from the defense when sitting on the bench.

    Example: Man they are down by so many goals they even let the duster have a shift.


7 of 22

    A very commonly used term that most hockey fans should already know that refers to an insane shot that places the puck in a tiny space for a goal. A sniper is a player who can do this on a regular basis.

    Example: Dangle, Snipe, Celly, the perfect combination.


8 of 22

    A celebration after a goal that is more than just raising your arms. Fist pumps, jumping against the boards, riding the stick and down-on-one-knee are popular cellys. When overdone, a celly can become a target for trash talk.

    Example: Did you see that bender's celly, you'd think that was his first goal ever.


9 of 22

    A babysitter is a term used for a star player that is put on a line with two players of less skill, almost as if he is babysitting their line.

    Example: Hey man how's babysitting those two benders out there? They're wrecking your plus/minus.


10 of 22

    Simply put, hockey pants.

    Example: HA! You got deked outta your breezers back there eh?!


11 of 22

    Another simple term for the goalie. Derived from the shortened version of the word goaltender.

    Example: That tender robbed you on that slapshot.


12 of 22

    A pylon is obviously an orange cone, but they are used in nearly every hockey practice. A pylon in a hockey sense of the word refers to a defensemen that stands there and gets walked much like pylons do in practice.

    Example: You walked that D and made him look like a pylon.

Free Agent

13 of 22

    A term that hockey players use to describe a single hockey player. Free to utilize the status of hockey player to attract puck bunnies.

    Example: Man now that you left your girl and are a free agent you can bring all those puck bunnies back after the game!


14 of 22

    A common Canadian hockey term almost as old as the game itself that means basically, a loser. Derives its meaning from pre-zamboni games when the losers were in charge of hosing off the ice to refreeze cuts made by the skates.

    Example: Get off the ice you hoser! You lost!


15 of 22

    When a goalie makes a glove save and the momentum of raising his glove swings his hand up over his head much like a windmill. Often causes accusations of over-acting, Dominik Hasek being a prime example.

    Example: That windmill should make Sportcenter's Top 10!


16 of 22

    A grinder is a bit different from the other three being a player that digs deep and hustles hard for his spot on the team and is not afraid to throw down if need be.

    The other three terms often refer to an enforcer brought onto the team to protect the star players. In today's NHL, enforcers must be talented as well—unlike the old NHL when all they had to do was fight.

    Example: Man Probert was such a Pipe-fitter, he could clean someones clock with one punch.


17 of 22

    Another term for trash talk, often leads to fantastic sound and video clips for YouTube.

    Example: Are you gonna let that bender chirp you like that?


18 of 22

    A hockey helmet.

    Example: He clocked him so hard he knocked his bucket off his dome!


19 of 22

    A term often used to refer to a player illegally brought into a drop-in or beer league hockey game that is significantly better than the rest of the players on the team. Usually only plays a limited amount of games so the league does not find out.

    Example: Dude we totally would of won that game if that damn ringer didn't show up! He must of had a hatty in the first period.


20 of 22

    To wheel is a term often used in the phrase "turn and wheel", meaning turn and go—either skating full force or to turn and fire a clapper.

    Wheelhouse is refering to when a player turns to fire a slapshot and the puck is perfectly positioned in comparison to the player's stance so he can fire a laser.

    Example: That puck was right in my wheelhouse and that slapshot was so hard!


21 of 22

    A slapshot. Used when yelling from the bench as it feels faster to yell than slapshot. Speculated origin is from the noise the puck makes when hitting the stick at such a high velocity.

    Example: Fire a clapper! This tender is scared of them!

Hatty/Natural Hatty

22 of 22

    A hatty is a slang term for the phrase hat-trick, when a player scores three goals in a game, resulting in fans throwing their hats onto the ice.

    Natural hatty is used when a player scores three goals in one period OR when scoring three goals in a game as long as no other goals occurred in between.

    Also can be referred to outside of hockey when a player indulges in the love-making with three women or puck bunnies.

    Example: One more this period and you've got a natural hatty bro!


    This in turn concludes my version of A Bender's Dictionary, hope you enjoyed it and if you have any terms I may have missed please leave a comment! The language of hockey will never get old and as the game progresses it will expand indefinitely!