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Ice caps: a hockey tradition with 200 years of history
There are many strict rules and laws in hockey, and all of them are invariably followed by hockey players. But there is also a place for unrecorded traditions that do not become less significant from this. So, the custom associated with hat-tricks is one of the most interesting among them.
Hat-trick in football and hockey, three goals are scored in one match by one player ... But the concept extends to the number three achievements in other sports. In English, this phrase sounds like hat trick, and the first word hat translates as a hat. Therefore, the tradition of celebrating hat-tricks is associated with hats: to congratulate the player and celebrate his performance, hockey fans throw their caps on the ice.
How did the term hat-trick come about?
First the mention of a hat-trick refers to cricket. In 1858, in England, a player named Stevenson went through three goals in a row, which in those days was a rather difficult trick. Then the best player of the match was traditionally given a gift for the money collected by other players, and Stevenson got the hat. After this incident, the participants who performed three hardest strikes in a row or passed three gates were presented with a top hat in recognition of their high skill.
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Where did the tradition of throwing caps on the ice come from?
The first game in NHL history took place on December 19, 1917. Then four players scored three or more goals, but there were no hats on the ice. It turns out that this tradition appeared in hockey a little later. There are many stories about how and where this happened. If one is to be believed, the tradition began in the 1950s in New York, where one of the teams was sponsored by the local hat maker Biltmore Hats. They introduced the tradition of giving their hats to the best players of the match. And when all the team members were wearing hats, they decided to reward only those who made a hat-trick. There are similar stories in Torontno, Chicago and Montreal, because everyone wants to believe that their city became the ancestor of the tradition.
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One interesting legend says that the birth of the tradition was helped by a fluke. In one of the matches, the striker threw three goals in a row into the goal, while the third goal was decisive and was scored almost simultaneously with the siren. One of the fans on the pEither accidentally, or deliberately threw his hat on the ice, and the rest of the team's fans followed suit. A week later, history repeated itself, and later spread throughout America.
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The Hockey Hall of Fame Version
The Hockey Hall of Fame in Canada has an official version of the origin of this tradition. She is also the most romantic. It all happened in 1946, when Alex Caleta, a newcomer to Chicago Blackhawks, was walking around the city in a hats store. He liked one of them, but didn't have enough money to buy it. Then the store owner, who turned out to be a big fan of hockey, promised to give a hat to the player if he scored three goals in the next match. Whether it was a fluke, or a great motivation to get a headdress, helped Alex Caleta score these three goals. The owner of the store not only kept his word, but also promised to give new hats to every player who scored a hat-trick on the ice of their home arena. This is how, according to the Hockey Hall of Fame, the already known tradition appeared.
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What happens to ice caps after the match?
This question worries many fans. Especially those who have already had occasion to throw their headgear into the ice arena. But there are no special rules here. In some clubs, these caps are collected for the author of the hat-trick, and he already disposes of them at his own discretion: he donates to charity or leaves for his collection. In September of this year, Siberian striker Danil Romantsev said that the caps thrown onto the ice after his hat-trick will go to an orphanage - necessarily with the signature of the hockey player.
Romantsev: caps thrown onto the ice after hat-tricks, will go to the orphanage
And Kirill Kaprizov, in his turn, hinted in an interview several times that he would like to take these caps for himself, but they never reach him. Roughly a third of already well-worn caps go to the trash, no matter how offensive it is.
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Some teams in arenas have special tanks in which caps are collected. Such decorations can be seen at the Washington Capitals, Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins.
For a cap thrown on the ice, fans got into the police
Who would have thought, but with such a harmless tradition could have happened unpleasant incident. In 2014, the court fined Siberian fans who threw their caps on the ice. The police saw a violation of public order in the fact that the team's fans began to throw hats in support of the Novosibirsk striker Yarno Koskiranta, who had scored a hat-trick. The World Court ruled to fine the violators - 3 thousand rubles each. The fines imposed on the fans were paid by the club.