A lot has been made of James Wisniewski’s amusing gesture to Sean Avery during Monday’s Rangers-Islanders game. Some have dubbed Wisniewski a “jerk-off” while others are referring to the incident as “fellatio-gate” (stick tap to Puck Daddy for that one).
Personally, I think the whole thing has been blown out of proportion. It’s just a silly thing that was done in the heat of the moment. Even Wisniewski regrets doing it. Besides, life can be a slippery slope sometimes – we all make mistakes.
But here’s the thing many fans don’t know: these kinds of gestures are very prevalent throughout the NHL. You may not have noticed them before, but after reading this article you’ll start noticing gestures everywhere.
Here are a few of the more common NHL gestures:
5 Plus 5
Explanation: Spread each of your five fingers out on both of your hands as if you are showing the number 10. You know, 10 as in two-thirds of the average New Jersey Devils line up.
Explanation: Place both hands firmly around your hips and chuckle like some evil villain from the first Die Hard movie. What are you laughing at? The very prospect that the Phoenix Coyotes might actually be sold some time soon.
Explanation: Fully extend and hold both of your arms as if they are tied and bound together. You’ll find this aptly describes Ilya Kovalchuk’s 15-year sentence in Jersey.
Explanation: With your left hand, press your middle finger and thumb together to make a zero. Now show this gesture to the Calgary Flames CEO Ken King and tell him it represents the impact of his number one line. He’ll know the line you are referring to. The one featuring two amazing UFA signings in Olli Jokinen and Alex Tanguay this past summer.
Can’t See You
Explanation: Place your hands over your eyes, covering them completely. Then make an arbitrary decision based on what you didn’t just see. This is exactly how the NHL’s chief disciplinarian Colin Campbell makes his suspension rulings.
Explanation: Stand still and slightly tilt your head to the left. Let your body become totally motionless. Then act completely confused at anything and everything. This is known around the NHL as “Dion Phaneuf interview mode.”
Explanation: Raise your right arm until your elbow reaches the height of your chin. Proceed move your right arm left to right in a swaying motion. Dominic Moore uses this gesture to his teammates every trade deadline after he’s traded for a second round draft pick.
Explanation: Fully extend your right arm and point only your index finger. Close the rest of your fingers into your fist, raise your thumb and turn your arm until your thumb is pointing upwards. You will need to perfect this gesture by next week when it’s time to fire both of the Sutter brothers in Calgary.
Stay classy, common NHL gestures.