What We Learned: An etiquette guide to throwing your NHL jersey in protest


(Hello, this is a feature that will run through the entire season and aims to recap the weekend’s events and boils those events down to one admittedly superficial fact or stupid opinion about each team. Feel free to complain about it. Today, guest columnist Greg Wyshynski has the helm.)

 By Greg Wyshynski

It’s always interesting to see what earns the label of “disrespectful” or “sacrilege” in the NHL.

To me, I’m a reporter trying to do my job in the locker room, standing where I need to stand to do so. To them, I’m trampling all over the Sacred Floor Logo, which is tantamount to pissing on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

To me, a paying customer has a right to voice his or her displeasure over the performance of a team at any point during the game. To them, that’s a lack of fan support, met with a ‘we don’t come to your job and BOO YOU’ attitude in postgame interviews.

To me, throwing your jersey on the ice can be one of the ultimate expressions of fan angst at best; or at worst, a really nasty prank from a Habs fan in Toronto.

To them … well, they fight for that logo and bleed for that logo and take pride in that logo and yadda yadda yadda. Or as James Reimer said, after another Leafs jersey hit the ice:

“To see a jersey on the ice like that and to see someone throw it, it’s too bad because obviously I get the message you’re trying to send, but it’s something we have a great respect for and we fight hard for that logo,” he said. “It’s too bad when somebody does that. But they bought the jersey so they can do what they want with it.”

Jersey tossing is the new “chanting for your coach to be fired.” It’s something that gets on TV or immediately hits social media. It seems exclusive to Canada at the moment, mainly because the typical Canadian fan has more sweaters in their closet than Jos A. Bank has suits.

As the jerseys continue to rain down in Toronto and Edmonton, perhaps we can bridge the respect gap between disgruntled players and fans with a quick etiquette lesson:

DON’T TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF it’s the second game of the season and your team has made significant changes to its front office since last season, starting at the top. They probably deserve a little more time to remake the roster in their image.

TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF it’s the second game of the season and you’re an Edmonton Oilers fan.

DON’T TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF you’ve carefully chosen the name on the back for its meaning to you, as a person or a player.

TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF you’re probably going to throw that David Clarkson sweater you got two summers ago into a bonfire anyway.

DON’T TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF you believe the only time a fan should toss anything on the ice is to celebrate a hat trick.

TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF you are deciding between throwing that beer at the players or your sweater, knowing that a brew at the ACC actually costs more than your Made In China knockoff you brought from a guy with a shopping cart on Bloor.

DON’T TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF you take the advice of moralizing pundit Cathal Kelly and instead give it to a young fan that doesn’t have a Leafs jersey.

TOSS YOUR JERSEY ON THE ICE IF you correctly recognize this as child abuse.

In the end, we hope that things in Edmonton and Toronto turn around so the jersey tossing will end. Especially in Edmonton, where they probably don’t have the disposable income they do in Toronto, where they apparently go through hockey sweaters like most of us go through Kleenex.

What We Learned

Anaheim Ducks: Bruce Boudreau on Sami Vatanen, who scored two power-play goals on Sunday: “Last year, he never hit the net when he shot the puck. It’s been five games in [this season], and he’s hit the net twice. That’s a real big improvement.”

Arizona Coyotes: It’s “anticipation” that makes Keith Yandle such an effective player. No word if that includes anticipation for an eventual trade to the East.

Boston Bruins: The line of Loui Eriksson, Carl Soderberg and Chris Kelly is apparently the “Swede Emotion” line, and we’re always going to applaud an Aerosmith reference over the alterantive Boston cliche. Which is the Swede Kelly-Line (Ba Ba Ba … good times never seemed so good).

Buffalo Sabres: If they had their druthers, Sabres fans would send Drew Stafford packing right now, apparently unable to wait until the trade deadline like the rest of us.

Calgary Flames: Hey, just because Lambert’s off WWL this week doesn’t mean we’re not running Johnny Gaudreau’s first goal this season:

Carolina Hurricanes: The Canes could get Andrej Sekera, John-Michael Liles and Jeff Skinner, back into their lineup vs. the Jets on Tuesday. Eric Staal won’t be back until later in the their road trip, perhaps vs, Vancouver.

Chicago Blackhawks: Hey, did you guys know that Joel Quenneville is a pretty good coach that the Blackhawks are lucky to have?

Colorado Avalanche: Mile High Sticking thinks the Avs need to rediscover their “mojo,” which we imagine is code for “a goalie that can stop the obscene number of shots they allow.”

Columbus Blue Jackets: The Cannon thinks the Jackets are being far too fancy pants with the passing rather than shooting.

Dallas Stars: Said Lindy Ruff, on the Stars’ loss to the Philadelphia Flyers over the weekend: “We played stupid hockey. Lack of focus. Play like that, you deserve to lose.”

Detroit Red Wings: Is there really any way to dress up Stephen Weiss as anything but a titanic bust?

Edmonton Oilers: The case for Leon Draisaitl to follow Darnell Nurse back to junior. And what, miss the warming glow of the dumpster fire that is this season?

Florida Panthers: County commissioner Martin Kiar said the Panthers can leave town at any point if they get the NHL’s permission and paid their $63 million in debts. Would the county take Canadian funds?

Los Angeles Kings: Darryl Sutter on winning four in a row at home: “Well, I know if we would’ve lost one of ‘em it would be a calamity.

Minnesota Wild: The Wild are now 0-for-16 on the power play this season, which is weird because they have Vanek and stuff.

Montreal Canadiens: This article seems to establish that PA Parenteau should be pissed at the Avalanche for calling him less than a top six forward and then explains why the label fits.

Nashville Predators, America's Favorite Hockey Team: Shea Weber is OK in hockey.


New Jersey Devils: Damon Severson has started off red hot and played his way into the Calder conversation.

New York Islanders: Just in case you wondered why concussions are such a sticky situation, Mikhail Grabovski passed a protocol test and then developed symptoms the next day.

New York Rangers: Rick Nash scored an easy one on Sunday, but it was still good enough to count as his seventh(!) goal on the season.

Ottawa Senators: Why did Robin Lehner make a miraculous save on Saturday? Ask Erik Karlsson:"I was praying to God he would stop it, and he did.” There you go. Divine intervention. 

Philadelphia FlyersBrayden Schenn, on the trade block, despite being one of the Flyers better forwards to start the season?

Pittsburgh Penguins: In case you were wondering if the Penguins were recommitted to their bottom six, their fourth line is leading in offensive zone starts.

San Jose Sharks: Larry Robinson is phasing himself out of coaching; can’t he just Skype in from Sarasota?

St. Louis Blues: Crap-tastic injury news No. 1 – Paul Stastny is week-to-week with a bum shoulder.

Tampa Bay Lightning: Crap-tastic injury news No. 2 – Victor Hedman could miss up to a month with a broken hand.

Toronto Maple LeafsRandy Carlyle is happy with the Leafs’ penalty kill, but doesn’t really want to say so. "I don't like to make comments that are too flattering because it can come back and bite you in one game, as it did in the Pittsburgh game, when we gave up three goals. I don't want to get too far ahead of ourselves with that."

Vancouver Canucks: “Canucks have liftoff, but thrust is a must.” Truer words …

Washington Capitals: Barry Trotz on Alex Ovechkin – “He’s a maturing young man. Trust me, I say he is a little bit of a wildflower.” 

Winnipeg Jets: Looking “disinterested” at the lowest moments of the game does not a winning team make.

Play of the Weekend

Again with the P.K. Subban in the play of the week spot.

Gold Star Award

Oct 18, 2014; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos (91) on a break away before scoring against Vancouver Canucks goaltender Eddie Lack (not pictured) during the first period at Rogers Arena. (Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports)
Oct 18, 2014; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos (91) on a break away before scoring against Vancouver Canucks goaltender Eddie Lack (not pictured) during the first period at Rogers Arena. (Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports)

Steven Stamkos scored two goals and added an assist at the Vancouver Canucks, and Ben Bishop called him “the best player in the world.” Somewhere, Claude Giroux weeps …

Minus of the Weekend

Blah blah blah toughness agitation blah blah … this is still a late, meaningless hit by Ryan Kesler.

Perfect HFBoards Trade Proposal of the Week 

“Ovechking” either wants to troll Flames fans or can’t read a date of birth:

Avs trade:

RW Jarome Iginla

LW Jamie McGinn

2015 2nd Round Pick

Oilers trade:

RW Jordan Eberle

The explanation: “This trade provides the Oilers with some grit, character, and leadership which is much needed. The Avalanche get an excellent North-South goal scorer and point producer.”


Well guys, we've made it to the end of the summer in one piece, except for a few campers who are lepers.

Greg Wyshynski is the editor of Puck Daddy. Ryan Lambert is back with WWL next week.