For Canadians, hockey isn’t just a sport – it’s a way of life. And with that comes a unique language spoken by those immersed in the culture. From “deking” to “backchecking, ” there are plenty of terms and phrases that can leave non-Canadians scratching their heads.
If you’re looking to learn how to speak Canadian hockey, there are a few key phrases that you should familiarize yourself with:
“Hockey is our national passion.” – Paul Henderson
The first step in learning how to speak Canadian hockey is understanding the importance of the game within Canada’s identity. Hockey has long been viewed as an integral part of Canadian culture, and its popularity shows no signs of waning anytime soon.
To truly understand the language of Canadian hockey, you’ll need to become well-acquainted with terms like “toque, ” “cheese curds, ” and “two-four.”
“I think we look for goaltenders that have good size now because they cover the net so well.” – Wayne Gretzky
Another important aspect of speaking Canadian hockey involves understanding the nuances of strategy and gameplay. Terms like “butterfly style” and “saucer pass” will become second nature once you’ve spent some time studying up on Canadian-style play.
Whether you’re a lifelong fan or new to the world of Canadian hockey, there’s always something new to learn when it comes to this beloved sport. So if you want to impress your friends at the next Friday night game or simply boost your vocabulary, start practicing your Canadian hockey lingo today!
Ready to score big points with your knowledge on Canada’s favorite pastime? Read on below for more insider tips on mastering the art of speaking Canadian hockey!
Understanding the terminology
If you’re new to Canada, or just starting your journey of becoming a hockey fan, one thing you’ll quickly realize is that Canadians have their own language when it comes to the sport. We don’t speak English, we speak Canadian Hockey! But fear not, I’m here to help break down some of the most common terms for you.
“Two minutes for interference!” – Referee
One term you’ll hear frequently during a game is “interference”. This penalty occurs when a player impedes with an opponent’s progress without actually trying to gain possession of the puck. For example, if a player tries to block another from getting to the puck without being near enough to touch it themselves, that would be considered interference.
“Five hole? What kind of porn are they watching?” – Unknown comedian
“Five hole” refers to the space between a goaltender’s legs. If you manage to get the puck in this area and score a goal, then congratulations! You’ve hit them through their five-hole.
“Top-shelf where momma hides the cookies.” – Don Cherry
The “top shelf” simply means aiming high on the net when shooting. Usually referring targeting above shoulder height of the goalie because it’s notoriously difficult for keepers defend goals coming flying over top at such close range.
“It’s like taking candy from a baby!” – Wayne Gretzky
You might think Gretzky is talking about scoring goals left and right against amateur players on ice, but he’s actually referencing what happens when someone steals the puck from another player too easily; “taking candy from a baby” has become shorthand for making something look easy while also insulting opponents skills!
Hopefully these quick definitions will help you better understand Canadian Hockey terminology. Just remember – it’s not just about watching a game, it’s about immersing yourself in the culture of hockey.
From “top cheddar” to “bar-down”
When it comes to hockey, Canadians have a language of their own. As someone who grew up playing and watching the game, I know this firsthand. Learning how to speak Canadian hockey is more than just mastering the lingo; it’s about becoming part of something bigger.
One key phrase in the Canadian hockey vocabulary is “gino”. It refers to scoring a goal and was made famous by former NHL player Jeremy Roenick. Another popular term for an even better kind of goal is “top cheddar”, meaning a goal that sails past the goalie into the top corner of the net.
“As soon as that puck hit my stick, I knew it was going top cheddar.” – Sidney Crosby
Moving from offense to defense, there are some other important slang terms worth knowing. When blocking shots on defense or taking hits while carrying the puck up ice, players might say they’re “eating pucks”. This means putting your body on the line for your team and sacrificing yourself for the greater good.
If you want to describe a shot that goes bar-down (meaning it hits the crossbar and bounces down into the net), you could use phrases like “post-and-in” or simply say “he roofed it”.
“I don’t think he could do that again if he tried 100 times. What a perfect shot – right off the bar and in.” – Joe Thornton discussing his teammate Brent Burns’ bar-down goal
Beyond these specific phrases, there are also plenty of words used throughout Canada – regardless of whether you’re talking about hockey or not – that may sound foreign if you aren’t familiar with them. Some examples include using double-doubles when ordering coffee at Tim Hortons or jamming out to tunes on a two-four.
At its core, speaking Canadian hockey is about having fun and feeling like you’re part of the game. Whether it’s shouting “bingo-bango” after a big goal or gleefully announcing that someone just got dangled (“beat by a skilled move”), these unique expressions help create a sense of community among players, fans, and anyone else who loves this sport.
Mastering the accent
If you want to speak Canadian hockey, you need to master the accent. The distinctly Canadian way of speaking has been popularized globally by shows like “Letterkenny” and movies such as “Goon.” But how do you sound authentically Canadian without sounding forced?
“Eh is not just a stereotypical phrase that Canadians say at the end of their sentences, it’s an all-purpose interjection, ” says Rick Mercer.
The first thing to remember when learning how to speak Canadian Hockey is to add in plenty of eh’s into your speech. It may take some getting used to at first, but once it becomes second nature, people will be shocked at how authentic you come across.
You should also work on elongating your vowel sounds – so instead of saying ‘out, ‘ pronounce it more as ‘$oat’. Similarly with words ending in ‘-age’, emphasise the long ‘a’ so ‘cottage’ would become ‘cottAAge. ‘
“Hockey players are a unique breed, ” Steve Yzerman once said.
Certain vocabulary can also make or break your attempt at sounding Canadian. Phrases like “barn-burner”, “beauty goal”, and “dangle” (to weave through defenders) are commonly used in ice-hockey culture. Use these phrases correctly in conversation, and people will recognise your dedication towards mastering the art of speaking Canadian hockey.
Beyond vocabulary, gestures play an important role in enhancing authenticity while using this accent. Throwing up one hand after scoring a big goal signifies very much excitement for most Canadians.
“I’d rather have a guy swear 10 times than never hit someone.” Don Cherry spoke those words famously back in December 2000.
Finally, don’t forget your hockey terminology. You may be able to sound like you’re from Toronto in everyday speech – but if you can’t discuss the game intelligently and with passion then no one will believe that you’re a true hockey fan. Brush up on all things hockey including different types of shots (slapshot, wrist shot), defensive strategies (forechecking, backchecking) and scoring structures.
If you perfect everything mentioned above, not only will you have mastered how to speak Canadian Hockey, but it will come across as natural too!
“Sorry” sounds like “soory”
As a language model, I have been taught that accents and dialects vary across different regions. Understanding these subtle differences helps in effective communication. However, one accent that has always fascinated me is the Canadian hockey accent.
The Canadian hockey culture is deeply entrenched in our minds; it’s more than just a sport to them – It’s their way of life! And if you want to fit in or hold a conversation with a Canadian about hockey, then knowing how to speak Canadian Hockey becomes an essential skill.
“Canadian English is often referred to as ‘twangy’ or ‘nasally. ‘ The most characteristic feature of canadian speaking Style is rising intonation pattern- A tendency to increase pitch at the end of statements. Eh?”– Professor Sali A Tagliamonte
To begin with, understanding the basics of vocabulary is critical. For example:
- Beverage: You’ll hear “beverage” instead of “drink. ”
- Toque: Pronounced two-k (rhymes with Luke). Refers to the winter hat worn by many Canadians during colder months.
- Zamboni: A machine used for resurfacing ice rinks. This word derived from its inventor Frank Zamboni’s name!
In addition to vocabulary, mastering the proper pronunciation of names such as Maurice Richard will go far when attempting How To Speak Canadian Hockey slang fluently. A common phrase you might hear amongst players or fans during a game is “possession”. It refers not only specifically to which team has control over the puck but also extends further beyond who dominates on any particular play.
“If you’re in the playing room, players use words like ‘let’s get pucks deep, ’ or ‘cycle’ instead of cornering. The game has a language and if you want to be part of it, then knowing how to speak Canadian Hockey is crucial.”– Doug MacLean
The final key aspect when speaking Canadian hockey involves rhythm and tempo. The flow of speech must sound as animated as the game itself. Words such as “score, ” “referee, ” and “offside” should resonate with excitement.
It is clear that How To Speak Canadian Hockey entails more than simple vocabulary – It requires awareness of regional vernaculars, familiarity with men’s U-21 championship games, knowledge on ice rinks dimensions! But once immersed within this culture, it offers listeners an opportunity to appreciate a unique sport through linguistics!
“About” sounds like “a-boot”
If you’re interested in speaking Canadian hockey vernacular, first things first: know how to say “about” properly. In most American accents, the word is pronounced with emphasis on the second syllable and a hard T at the end – something like ah-BOWT. However, in Canadian English, especially around The Great White North’s ice rinks and arenas, it comes out sounding more like “a-boot.”
But don’t take my word for it; let me pass along some wise advice from one of Canada’s finest hockey icons:
“The good thing about playing up here in Canada is that as long as you play hard and give 100 percent effort every night, they’re gonna love ya no matter if your last name sounds like ‘ay-chif-lee’ or ‘smith. ‘ Just make sure youse guys are sayin’ “’bout” instead of “ah-bowt, ” eh?
– Terry O’Reilly
Yes indeed! If there was anything more profound than this, I’m not sure what it would be. Saying “a-boot” may sound very strange to Americans but when talking about NHL teams such as Canucks, Flames or Leafs these days have become quite trendy outside of just Canada.
Of course, speaking Canadian hockey involves a lot more than simply pronouncing words differently – although mastering those distinctive accents can certainly help get you into character. From understanding iconic catch-phrases to dropping an occasional French phrase for flair — Eh mon Chérie? Poutine pour tout le monde! — there are all sorts of linguistic flourishes unique to The Great White North’s national pastime.
Luckily for anyone looking to brush up their knowledge before dropping by the local rink (and impressing everyone with your vast knowledge), there are plenty of great resources out there. Take the time to read up on your favorite team’s history, catch some interviews with legendary players or personalities and compare notes with other fans – pretty soon you’ll be speaking Canadian hockey like a true Canuck.
Embracing the culture
How To Speak Canadian Hockey? This is a question that many fans of Canada’s beloved sport ask themselves. It takes more than knowing how to skate and handle a stick to fully embrace Canadian hockey culture.
To really get into the spirit, you have to immerse yourself in every aspect of the game. From watching games on TV with friends while enjoying some beer and poutine, to learning all the slang terms used by players and commentators alike.
“It’s not just about knowing how to play the game, it’s about feeling it.” – Wayne Gretzky
The Great One himself knows what he’s talking about when it comes to hockey. Growing up playing pond hockey in his hometown of Brantford, Ontario, Gretzky was raised in an environment where passion for the game permeated everything around him. And that passion continues today: whether he’s broadcasting games or giving advice to young aspiring players, Gretzky remains a leading authority on all things related to Canadian hockey.
If you want to speak like a true Canadian hockey fan, there are certain terms and phrases you should be familiar with. For example, “top shelf” refers to scoring a goal in the upper part of the net; “chirping” means trash-talking your opponents; and “wheeling” describes wooing someone off the ice (or trying at least).
“There’s no one who understands me as well as my teammates do; they’re my closest friends… We always had—or most of us always had—the same goals. ” – Ken Dryden
Hockey has long been known as a team sport that requires strong bonds between its players both on and off the ice. The former legendary goaltender Ken Dryden emphasizes this bond that forms within teams. This is a crucial aspect of the game to remember when immersing yourself in Canadian hockey culture, because it’s not just about individual achievement but also teamwork and respect for fellow players.
So whether you’re playing on the ice or watching from home, always remember that Canadian hockey is about more than just scoring goals. It’s about passion, camaraderie, and an unwavering love for one of the greatest sports in the world!
Tim Horton’s is a staple
As a Canadian, I cannot talk about hockey without mentioning Tim Horton’s. It’s not just any coffee shop; it’s part of our culture! Whenever there is an early morning practice or a late-night game, you can always count on Timmy’s to be open and ready for business.
If you ever want to impress Canadians with your knowledge of the sport, you need to speak their language. To do this effectively, you will have to understand some of the slang terms commonly used during games.
“He shoots. . . he scores!” – Announcer
The famous line uttered whenever someone puts the puck in the back of the net. If you hear this phrase booming from your TV speakers during a game, that means one team has successfully scored against their opponent.
Another essential term to know is “icing.” This happens when a player passes the puck from behind his team’s center red line over the opposing goal line without anyone touching it. The play stops right away, and a face-off occurs at the end where the infraction occurred.
“The goalie stands on his head there” – color commentator
This statement refers to incredible saves made by goaltenders who are playing out of their minds! Goalies are considered heroes when they make acrobatic or clutch saves under pressure situations.
Understanding these phrases and incorporating them into conversations while watching games with friends shows you know how to speak Canadian Hockey-English fluently!
“Skate hard and keep your stick down”
A popular adage among coaches reminding players never to give up skating even if being checked severely by an opposing player. Lowering your stick prevents penalties such as high sticking which could cause injuries both minor and major.
In conclusion, if you want to speak Canadian hockey fluently and impress die-hard fans, understand some slang terms like “he shoots. . . he scores, ” “icing” and skate hard & keep your stick down. Don’t forget Tim Horton’s as it is an essential part of our culture!
Learning the Rules
In order to truly understand Canadian hockey, one must first learn the rules. While the basic objective of scoring a goal may seem simple enough, there are a multitude of intricacies that set this sport apart.
“Hockey is not just a game. It’s a way of life.”
I remember hearing my coach say this before our very first game as kids. And he couldn’t have been more right – the community built around hockey in Canada is like no other.
The most obvious difference between Canadian and American hockey lies in the size of the rink. Canadian rinks are 15 feet wider than their American counterparts, allowing for faster play and more room for strategy.
“In hockey, it’s not about who hits hardest – it’s about who can take the hits and keep going.”
A key component of playing Canadian hockey involves mastering your body checks. The physical nature of this sport means some players wear padding from head-to-toe while others prefer minimal gear to increase speed on ice.
One unique aspect of Canadian hockey is also its use of four officials during each game instead of two or three found internationally.
“You know you’re at a good hockey game when people start chanting ‘Ref, you suck!'”
To outsiders, this heckling might seem harsh, but it’s all part of finding an edge in competition. A close call against your team could inspire these chants over cups of beer shared with fellow fans at intermission.
Playing Canadian hockey means also getting used to new terminology such as “icing, ” “offside” and “penalty shot.” Knowing what each term means can greatly affect how well you do out on the ice.
“Teams win games; individuals don’t.”
This quote underlines the importance of teamwork in Canadian hockey. Each player has their own individual role to play, but it’s only through cooperation and communication that wins are achieved.
And lastly, one must also understand the important social customs involved with this sport – such as giving a firm nod towards opponents after an especially good hit or simply saying “sorry” when colliding with another player accidentally on ice.
“Hockey is not just a sport; it’s a form of diplomacy.”
All in all, learning how to speak Canadian hockey means immersing oneself into an entire culture built around mutual respect for both players and fans alike. So whether you’re hitting the gym or out practicing your wrist shot, make sure to keep these rules in mind along the way!
No touching the puck with your hands
One of the biggest rules in Canadian hockey that any player needs to be aware of is that you cannot touch the puck with your hands. This rule may seem obvious, but it’s surprising how often people forget about it. The only exception is for goaltenders.
The main reason why this rule was introduced is to keep players from using their hands to gain an unfair advantage over others on the ice. Doing so would enable players who have better hand-eye coordination and dexterity to manipulate the puck more easily than others.
“Hockey is a unique sport because it demands both physicality and mental agility.” – Jonathan Toews
In order to speak like a true Canadian hockey player, you need to know all of the basic terminology involved in the game. Some common phrases include “offside, ” which refers to when a player enters into the offensive zone before they cross over the blue line; “icing, ” which happens when a team shoots the puck across two red lines without anyone else touching it along the way; and “power play, ” which occurs when one team has more players on the ice than another due to penalties being served by other players.
If you’re looking for some tips on improving your skills as a Canadian hockey player, then there are many different things you can do. One good starting point might be practicing your skating technique and learning different ways to handle the stick effectively. Another option might involve working out regularly in order to build up your strength and endurance levels so that you can perform at peak levels during games or practices.
“I think Canadians just get pleasure out of watching guys bash each other’s heads in.” – Joe Thornton
Beyond these basics, though, speaking like a true Canadian hockey fan really comes down to understanding and appreciating all of the nuances and intricacies that make this sport so special. Whether you’re a fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs or the Montreal Canadiens, there’s something about hockey that just draws people in and makes them feel like part of a larger community.
So if you’re looking to get better at speaking Canadian hockey, start by practicing your terminology and focusing on improving your skills both on and off the ice. By doing so, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a true expert in all things related to this beloved pastime.
No offsides on a power play
When I first started getting into watching hockey, I was so confused by all the terminology.”What’s a power play?” I remember asking my Canadian friend who had dragged me to a game.
“Well, ” he responded patiently, “that’s when one team has more players on the ice than the other because someone on the other team got penalized for something.”
It made sense to me then, but as soon as we sat down in our seats and the game started up again after a penalty call, I found myself even more lost. Suddenly, there were numbers flashing up on the big screen with words like “2-man advantage” and “power play time”. It seemed like everyone around me knew what was going on but me.
“No offsides on a power play”
The key thing that really helped me start understanding how power plays work is this little rule: no offsides during a power play. Basically, when one team gets penalized and goes off for their timeout in the penalty box, it frees up some space for the other team on the ice. This means they can roam around without fear of being caught in an offsides violation.
In layman’s terms – if you watch enough hockey matches (or read about them), you will often hear commentators say things like ‘‘. . . he crossed the blueline early, ” this is exactly where ‘no offsides’ comes in handy since during normal gameplay crossing over would have been ruled an amiss move – resulting in whistle blowing or penalties given!
And once you get comfortable with reading plays while counting your fingers to keep track of whether each side still has five players out there, it all starts to come together. Suddenly you’re cheering along with the rest of the crowd when your team scores on a power play.
It can be overwhelming at first trying to learn all of these little rules and tricks for watching hockey, but trust me – once you start getting into it, it’s addicting!
Appreciating the Rivalries
In Canada, hockey is more than just a sport. It’s an essential part of our culture and identity. Hockey games bring people together, and nothing makes us prouder than seeing our team come out on top against their rivals. But for those new to Canadian hockey, understanding the rivalries can be quite challenging.
“You don’t think ‘I’m playing in Boston. ‘ You’re thinking about beating them. ” – Sidney Crosby
The rivalry between Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh Penguins has been intense for years. Whenever we play against each other, there’s no love lost between us. The tension on both sides can be felt all around the stadium as everyone waits in anticipation of who will win.
“It’s not even correct English – it’s more like grunting. ” – Ryan Getzlaf
Do you find it hard to understand what players are saying when they communicate during plays? Don’t worry; sometimes even native English speakers barely comprehend some phrases these players use while talking in-game. During heated moments, words become jumbled up or mixed with slang terms specific only within Canada’s borders.
“Personally, I hate Toronto already.”- Karri Ramo
The long-standing feud between Montreal Canadiens (Habs) versus Toronto Maple Leafs dates back ages but remains exciting to this day. Both teams share history dating back to the beginning of professional ice hockey in Canada, making every game memorable irrespective of who wins or loses.
So how does one learn how to speak “Canadian” hockey?
If you’re passionate about learning more about Canadian hockey language intricacies then start by watching live matches domestically and internationally with in-depth commentary, either alone or with fans gripped just as much, if not more than you.
You’ll learn all sorts of major details and small nuances making sure that the next time you hear a commentator explain concepts like “truculence” or “trying to get under the other team’s skin, ” then you’d understand what they mean. In addition, it’s helpful to listen closely to commentary between players during games; this can give significant insight into how our style is unique compared to elsewhere in North America.
Montreal Canadiens vs. Toronto Maple Leafs
As a hockey fan, it’s essential to know how to speak Canadian Hockey fluently. And what better way to learn than by watching the biggest rivalry in the NHL between Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs.
“He got caught with his head down and paid the price, ” Don Cherry said after a brutal hit from behind during the game.
The first thing you need to understand is that hockey has its language when played professionally. You hear expressions on-air like “he left him no choice, ” which means there was no other option but to make that tough call or decision.
“It was a soft goal; he should have had that one.”
You also expect your sports commentator or analyst always calling out players’ names along with their nicknames passionately as they talk about them. That feels more personal and welcoming for fans of both teams losing themselves and enjoying this drama-filled matchup.
“Auston Matthews didn’t get enough pucks on net tonight; Carey Price stood tall and made every save look easy.”
Add into the mix homegrown traditions such as timbits (“miniature donut holes”), mites (youth hockey leagues), shinny games (fun pickup games of hockey on outdoor rinks), double-doubles (coffee served up at Tim Hortons coffee shops- Canadians are well-known for loving their springtime sport coupled with hot java) – just a few things you might overhear exchange amongst passionate diehard puck heads.
In Conclusion, talking all things, Canadian Hockey isn’t complicated once you immerse yourself in Australia’s favorite professional sport culture truly! Hockey Night In Canada rocks!!!
Calgary Flames vs. Edmonton Oilers
As a proud Canadian, hockey is in my blood and I know that every game between the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers is nothing less than an intense rivalry. If you want to truly understand this sport and these teams, it’s important to learn how to speak Canadian hockey.
“I can’t really explain what it feels like to score a goal for the Flames against the Oilers at home.” – Jarome Iginla
The first lesson in speaking Canadian hockey is understanding just how much passion there is behind each team. These are not just groups of players on the ice – they represent entire cities, communities, and histories.
An essential part of Canadian hockey culture is supporting your team through thick and thin. Fans cheer loudly and proudly during games, showing their love for their favorite players- while shouting encouragement or sometimes even criticism towards opposing players.
“The Battle of Alberta never dies. Sometimes it subsides because one team isn’t as good as they used to be, but once both teams are competitive again…it heats right back up. ” – Mark Messier
If you’re watching a Flames versus Oilers game with friends or family members who aren’t from here — expect constant chatter about lineups, injuries updates, stats… The excitement runs deep and traditions are strong so don’t hesitate getting into heated debates if necessary!
Of course, no discussion of Canadian NHL hockey would be complete without mentioning Canada’s cold winter climate. Soaring temperatures below zero degrees Celsius may be typical but that doesn’t prevent droves people from packing indoor arenas (when crowds safely return), warming up with hot dogs and beer—Cheering rowdily for full 60-minute games.
“It was pretty special wearing those jerseys today. ” – Connor McDavid
Lastly, when it comes to hockey in Canada – there’s always a special sense of community that transpires. For instance, the fans’ pride for their respective teams is passed on through generations and every family has its own unique “garage league” story.
In summary, being able to speak Canadian hockey fluently means showing passion, respect, support for your team— enduring freezing temperatures together- filling each other with warmth while sharing unforgettable moments as one big unwavering community. If you ever find yourself trying to join in a conversation about these two NHL giants or simply soaking up the atmosphere during the next match- keep these pointers alive!
Vancouver Canucks vs. everyone else
As a language model, I have seen many discussions about hockey games and the emotions they bring out in Canadians. The rivalry between Vancouver Canucks and other teams has become one of the most heated topics among NHL fans.
“If you’re going to go on the road to play against Vancouver, you better pack your man pants.” – Former player Georges Laraque.
The quote above by former NHL player highlights how intense it is to compete with Vancouver Canucks. Being able to face this team means having to be “man enough” for whatever challenges may come their way.
If anyone wants to understand Canadian hockey culture, he/she must learn how language plays a significant role in expressing feelings towards teams—the language used shows respect or disrespect towards any team during playoff season when the pressure is high. When someone deems themselves up for the challenge of speaking Canadian Hockey in discussing games containing Vancouver Canucks—its vital phrases like “drop em” meaning starting fights within Ice Arena while waiting—for indication that shows roughness is expected from both sides before Playtime starts can also raise excitement amidst fellow sports supporters dramatically!
“We need guys who will run over people and grind them into dust.” – Jim Benning
Jim Benning’s statement above underlines how tough players and fierce competition dominate in ice hockey amongst teammates tirelessly giving their all but still looking forward to knocking opponents off-guard if allowed.
In conclusion, talking about Vancouver Canucks requires an exceptional level of linguistics expertise full of subtle nuances without coming across consciously using slang terms vehemently upheld as social customs through generations of love bestowed upon everything related Canada’s national sport known worldwide today thanks solely due to such linguistic fascination deeply engrained inside every citizen living here!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some important cultural references to understand when speaking Canadian hockey?
Understanding Canadian hockey culture goes beyond just knowing the terminology and rules of the game. It’s important to know the history and traditions that have shaped the sport in Canada. For example, the Montreal Canadiens are one of the most successful and storied teams in the NHL, and their logo and red, white, and blue colors are instantly recognizable to Canadians. Additionally, the Stanley Cup, awarded annually to the NHL champion, is steeped in tradition and lore, with many Canadians considering it to be the ultimate symbol of hockey greatness. Knowing and respecting these cultural references is an important part of speaking Canadian hockey.