So, you think you’re the ultimate ice-hockey fan? While you think you know everything there is to know about the NHL, Gretzky and the stanely Cup, there still might be one or 2 facts that catch you cold. Warm up for your next ice-hockey match by either playing one our ice-hockey themed games, reading about it, or reading about these surprising facts about hockey:
Bad fan behavior led to the installation of the flexiglass panels
So you know those plexiglass panels that separate the fans from the players in every professional hockey arena? Those panels only came into existence in 1979, when the NHL decided to install them after a brawl between fans and players.
Helmets weren’t always compulsory
It seems that 1979 was a big year for change in the NHL, as players also weren’t required to wear helmets before this year. However, players who had signed to play in the NHL before this year could still go on the ice helmetless (Craig MacTavish was the last player to play without a helmet in 1997).
You, the fan, could get on the ice
While it seems rather far-fetched that it would ever happen, if both goalies are injured, an NHL team may choose anybody they wish to substitute the goalie– even you, the fan.
Hockey’s not cold, it’s blazing hot
Any hockey fan can attest that the puck flies like a bullet during any match. Abie Goldberry got first-hand experience of the sizzling nature of hockey in 1930, when he caught fire – a puck hit some matches in his pocket, igniting the flames.
Teams who win the Stanley Cup can go a little bit nuts
Winning the Stanley cup is a pretty big deal, so it’s unde4rstandabel that some teams lose control of their senses when they win it. This hysteria affected the Toronto Maple leafs, who accidentally threw the cup into a bonfire after winning the trophy in 1962. In 1905, players from the Ottawa Silver Seven also went a bit dilly when they kicked the cup into the frozen water of Rideau Canal. They had to brave the icy waters the next morning and go fetch the cup.