Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Venn Diagram of Hockey Hatred

There’s an old stereotype that hockey fans hate everyone. And like most stereotypes, it’s simply not true.

For example, we don’t hate Teemu Selanne. And, uh … well, that’s pretty much it, actually. Other than Selanne, yeah, we hate basically everyone else.

But we hate some people more than others. And our hate isn’t random — it’s based on a series of expectations, passed down from generation to generation, that govern how those in the hockey world should behave. Every fan knows them.

They’ve just never been written down … until now.

Here are the four key reasons a hockey fan would hate someone:

They're overexposed

Hockey players are supposed to blend quietly into the background. Anyone who gets too much attention — whether they asked for it or not — eventually becomes a target.

They just won’t be quiet

Much like small children, hockey fans expect our heroes to be seen but not heard. Anyone who makes any noise or (god forbid) actually forms an opinion must be silenced.

They take cheap shots

Hockey has a code. No, nobody has ever seen it or could agree on what it is. But the code is real, and taking a cheap shot violates it. Probably. Sometimes.

They just have one of those faces, you know?

Come on, we all know them when we see them.

Those are the four tenets of hockey hatred. And once you understand them, you can categorize all our hate into one neat diagram. Like this one...

>> View the full diagram on Grantland


  1. No FB account so I can't post on Grantland, but oh my sweet jesus, I was laughing like a moron at this graphic.

  2. Well as a buffalo native we have our own code that dictates who we root for and boo. It's quite simple and easy for a Toronto native to understand. We boo those who have either beat us in an important game (preseason and season openers count too) and we root for those playing against those teams because we know in our heart of hearts the sabres and bills are the forlorn hope. It only complicated when they play each other.
    And is it me or does Sean avery look like the terminator?

  3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fAvkfuPszcg

  4. Thornton (1) - Over-exposed = Gold...