Hockey Jersey Code and faux pas tips

September 29th, 2009 by Burgundy Leave a reply »

I’ve never understood why some fans wear jerseys at hockey games that bare no relevance to the two particular teams playing. It’s not that I’m neurotic or anything, but it’s a hockey faux pas that has no place in the game – similar to headshots or Steve Downie.

Dictionary.com elaborates for those of you who aren’t familiar with the term.

Faux pas
-non, plural faux pas [foh pahz; Fr. foh pah]
a slip or blunder in etiquette, manners, or conduct; an embarrassing social blunder or indescretion.

Not a classy jersey; not within The Code.
Not a classy jersey; not within The Code.

When it comes to wearing jerseys, there’s an etiquette… A Code, if you will.

For example, the Calgary Flames come into town and you wear a classic Theo Fleury jersey. That’s in line with The Code. Or maybe the Pittsburgh Penguins play the Ottawa Senators and someone wears a Los Angeles Kings jersey with a Scuderi name plate. It’s a stretch, but it makes sense. The Code is still intact. It’s not embarrassing, nor is a blunder to the great game of hockey.

But when someone wears a Sidney Crosby/Penguins jersey to a Minnesota Wild/Anaheim Ducks game, that’s a flat out violation of Hockey Jersey Code. This demonstrates a slip in etiquette, bad conduct and poor taste.

It can be tough picking out a new jersey while trying to adhere to The Code. In an effort to help, I’ve compiled a few tips and FYI’s to help you avoid breaking The Code and keeping things cool amongst the hockey gods. Here they are:

  • Avoid getting your name stitched onto your favorite team’s jersey. The Code doesn’t like cheese.
  • Never buy a Marian Hossa jersey. Chances are it will outdate itself within a year and then you’ll risk breaking The Code with irrelevance.
  • Don’t have any Ottawa Senator goalie name etched onto a Sens jersey. They just don’t last in Ottawa.
  • Purchasing a Dany Heatley jersey comes with a “no remove” clause and is subject to be worn forever.
  • Due to recent indecision, Mats Sundin jersey’s feature no colors or logos. As such, they are irrelevant to any NHL game.
  • Pyjama’s are not to be confused with NHL jerseys and are to be worn in bed only, Montreal Canadiens (see above). One could argue they support Jacques Martin’s boring defense first style, but I digress…
  • Just because Zdeno Chara fits into an XXXXXL sized jersey and looks cool, doesn’t mean you will. Ever. The Code requires fans to wear jerseys that fit properly. It’s a conduct thing.
  • Wearing a Patrick Kane jersey outside of an NHL arena could result in an unwanted fighting scandal. This is less about The Code and more of an FYI.
  • Only put names of players who officially play in the NHL on your jerseys. Having names like Jiri Tlusty or Nazem Kadri violates this rule.

Stay classy, hockey jersey wearers.

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26 comments

  1. Charly says:

    When your classic jerseys from decades pass remind you of the 24 cups you’ve won, come talk to me…. jerk.

  2. Champ says:

    Your next article needs to address the hockey jersey vs. hockey sweater debate. Please ensure to consult Jason York lol.

  3. All good rules to live by!

    Was at the Leafs v. Flyers game last weekend and spotted a guy in a Leafs jersey with “NOT SINCE” written in the name area and you guessed it “67″ for his number.

    On the plus side it will likely take a good amount of years before it is out of date.

    Justin
    @hockeycardshow

  4. Hedginator says:

    This was long overdue! Just seeing a Leafs jersey at a Sens vs (Any team other than the Leafs)game drives me nuts.

    I’m on the fence about “Chiefs” jerseys though…

  5. Burgundy says:

    Yeah, that’s a pretty safe choice :)
    I’m sure he’ll relish the day when he needs to replace it.

    Wes Mantooth and I were walking out of Scotiabank Place on Friday night (Sens/Bruins game) and saw a pack of 12 kids (or so) all wearing Habs jerseys. We were dumbfounded, so I had to create a Code.

  6. Ken says:

    What about wearing a Yashin jersey, duct-taping over his name, and writing Spezza in marker? Any takers?

  7. kuyaz says:

    As a Habs fan, I will have to agree with sleepwear as inappropriate for the ice.

  8. Good post but this:
    Or maybe the Pittsburgh Penguins play the Ottawa Senators and someone wears a Los Angeles Kings jersey with a Scuderi name plate. It’s a stretch, but it makes sense
    is wrong. The jersey has to be of one of the two teams playing.

    The other day at the Leafs-Flyers game I saw a Habs fan wearing a Beliveau jersey! WTF? Did he miss Komisarek that much?

  9. Burgundy says:

    I actually bet Mrs Burgundy that you’d respond with this exact comment, Charly. The reality is no amount of Stanley Cups makes up for these jerseys. Ugly is ugly.

  10. Burgundy says:

    @Kuyaz – Yes. Charly, please read Kuyaz’ comments.

    @Ken – Definitely a faux pas. Almost as bad as not wearing a brand new Alfie jersey.

    @Hedginator – I hear you. I’m on the fence about Chiefs, so I left them off. Although its relevant for Leafs games now (assuming Hanson one day makes it)

  11. Burgundy says:

    The other day at the Leafs-Flyers game I saw a Habs fan wearing a Beliveau jersey! WTF? Did he miss Komisarek that much?

    That made me laugh pretty hard.

  12. Tambland says:

    What if you wear a Nordiques jersey and your buddy wears a Jets jersey, and you’re from Colorado and Phoenix, respectively, but you’re watching a Flames/Oilers game?

    Faux pas?

  13. Burgundy says:

    Definite faux pas.

  14. Meaghan says:

    Just because Zdeno Chara fits into an XXXXXL sized jersey and looks normal, doesn’t mean you will. Ever. The Code requires fans to wear jerseys that fit properly. It’s a conduct thing.

    If you could pass this on to the NHL and get them to make woman-sized jerseys that aren’t pink, that would be great.

    I intend to wear a vandalized Heatley Sens jersey to a Sharks-Canucks game later this year. I think the fact that I’m doing it for political reasons makes it not a jersey foul.

  15. Burgundy says:

    I’ll do my best with the NHL. But as a heads up, they are slow when it comes to decision making. For example, it took them a whole year to institute a salary cap. Or it took years worth of demands to implement 2 line passing.

    I approve of the vandalized Heatley jersey. Kudos.

  16. Hedginator says:

    My wife was also looking for a “woman-sized” jersey…so she asked the girl who does the intermission games and tv time-out questions where she got hers…turns out it’s a kids small.

  17. Charly says:

    I don’t care… I wear the stripes with pride.

  18. Tambland says:

    So do prisoners…of hockey team propaganda.

  19. N3FF says:

    I feel like one should be able to wear a Gretzky jersey in any venue, at any game.

  20. Burgundy says:

    OK… I’m willing to make exception for the Great One.

  21. H. E. Moisant says:

    This is a stupid question. I am seeing the flyers at Dallas Stars in a couple months. I am a huge flyers fan (no it has nothing to do with hartnell’s hair) Can a I wear a jersey for the visting team? I plan on getting some heckling, but my seat is just behind the visitor’s bench. Any sugestions?

  22. Burgundy says:

    I think it’s perfectly OK wearing a jersey that bares any relevance to the game being played, so in your case a Stars or Flyers jersey makes perfect sense.

    Be prepared to be heckled by Stars fans! Have fun with it. Sounds like you’ll have a blast!

  23. I own 2 personalized Sens sweaters,

    Lalime
    Heatley

    Where were you before the purchase?

  24. Burgundy says:

    Probably studying The Code. Took awhile to learn… lots of research involved… you know how these things are. ;)

  25. tobito says:

    what about a player who is retired, also whalers?

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