Rookie Guide: The Comprehensive Guide to Hockey Fans and Where to Find Them

Michigan Stadium 2014. Picture: Getty Images

Listen up Rookie – if you are going to get along you are going to have to know who you are dealing with.

So, make sure you read, and read again.

This weeks Rookie Guide is a comprehensive list of Hockey Fan types. With Genus Name, Location, Description and important notes;

1. The Chuck-a-Puck Pro
[Hockius Fandidium ChuckusPuckusproium]
Location: Ready for the second break, this fan is already prepped in the prime throwing position.
Behaviour/Description: Their technique is impeccable. More like a frisby. Us normal chuck-a-puck-ers, can only watch on in wonder. They’ll have either mastered the art of carrying twenty quids worth of pucks in their arms, or have made a rather impressive tower of pucks on the nearest ledge, ready to go.
Notes: If you don’t do chuck a puck in your arena, look out for them at away games.

2. The Chatters
[Hockius Fandidium Chatteranus]
Location: These fans will be heard before being seen
Behaviour/Description: Often found in groups of 2 – 4.Who knows why they attend the game, from the minute they arrive, to the minute they leave, full blown conversation flows with no interest to the game, and without the hint of ice hockey in their conversation.
Notes: The collective noun is a “loose jaw of chatters”. Warning: take care if approaching a group of chatters as it may cause damage to the ears.

3. The Seasoned Veteran
[Hockius Fandidium Wisus-vetrandia]
Location: Wandering.
Behaviour/Description: This alpha fan, wonders the rink in search of people to chat to. They know everyone, and everyone knows them. They can recite the play by play commentary, from that mid season game where the team won 3-2 of little importance. This fan likely has 10+ books on the Elite League, or at least hockey in Britain, and their jersey is at least 10 years old.

4. The Walking Epitome of Anger
[Hockius Fandidium Angrius]
Location: High up in the stands.
Behaviour/Description: A noisy article, the one the crowd look to when there is a potentially dodgey call by the guys in stripes. Before the refs have even put the whistle to their lips, this fan is already shouting, eyes bulging, veins protruding – the voice of the crowd. Even pre or post game, this fan often finds anyone to talk loudly about anything, angrily.
Note: Whilst they may be bright red, and extremely loud, they are often very friendly. Just don’t mention that bad call earlier on…

5. The Commentator
[Hockius Fandidium sayus whatus you seeus]
Location: Sitting – usually in the middle of a block, for maximum coverage.
Behaviour/Description: The fan that reliably sits and chatters through the entire game, giving move by move descriptors of whats happening on the ice. Even though you are sitting next to them, watching the same game. Its surprising how many Doc Emerick wannabes there are!
Notes: If they do start doing a Doc voice, move.

6. The One Thats Only There For The One Player
[Hockius Fandidium puckius Bunnium]
Location: Pressed against the glass or loitering near the benches.
Behaviour/Description: Talk about fangirling… Can be male or female though… The game only matters after their favourite guy leaps onto the ice. Then they are pressed again the glass, and anything their guy does is perfect. Did you see the superb way he tripped over his own feet? So beautiful. Wow did you see that check from behind and to the head? The other guy clearly turned around and stood up for it to happen….. those people.
Notes: Can also be referred to as Puck Bunnies….

7. The Screamer
[Hockius Fandidium makingius noisius]
Location: Front row, near glass.
Behaviour/Description: Not much to be said. Its that person that just screams. All the time. Nothing understandable. Just noise.

8. The “I had free tickets” Person
[Generis Hockius Fandidium Freeus Tiketitis]
Location: Wondering lost, with eyes like rabbits in headlights.
Behaviour/Description: Having won, or been given the free tickets, through a competition, or corporate offers. Totally lost. Totally confused. Totally loving this confusing mess that is unravelling around them. Why is this in the Fan Guide I hear you ask? Well they may only be there by accident, or by luck – but by 40 minutes in – they are a fan. Suddenly becoming totally enthused and joining in the chants – even though they are getting them wrong.

9. The Loyal Other Half
[Fiducia Hockius Fandidium Dragad a Longda]
Location: meandering slowly behind a jersey wearing, chanting loyalist
Behaviour/Description: Similar to number 8. This is the other half that doesn’t want to admit that they enjoy going, but still comes week on week. They are usually pretending to play on their phone, whilst actually watching the game.

10. The Kids That Don’t Really Care
[parva Hockius Fandidium runium like da windius]
Location: They spend most of their time doing laps of the rink with their friends.
Behaviour/Description: They are fans Jim, but not as we know it. The children of fans, they are donned in their jerseys, they have met all the players, but still not sure whats going on. Often found with cowbells, or several of the chuck a puck pucks to use a projectiles.
Notes: They likely know far more about the game than you, don’t be fooled by their adorable baby faces.

11. The Back Seat Coach
[Hockius Fandidium Notius D coachius]
Location: Back row usually, or as close to the actual coach as possible.
Behaviour/Description: This fan knows best – they are the ones who know exactly what the guys on the ice should do, exactly who the coach should pull, the set play that should happen, the exact move that should be done. Apparently…. Usually knows best, after it happened… likes to let everyone know.
Notes: Try not to engage.

12. The Fidgeter
[Hockius Fandidium Wontium Sittus Stillis]
Location: Anywhere, but more likely end of row.
Behaviour/Description: You’ll know if you are near this person, the foot tapping, the wringing of the hands, the tapping and the rocking. Whether its nerves, excitement, or the desperate struggle to hold it in till the break…. This person will rock the whole row of seats.
Notes: Don’t sit near if you are easily irritable, or have sea sickness.

13. The Yoyo
[Hockius Fandidium Uppus Downus]
Location: Anywhere.
Behaviour/Description: The puck only needs to enter the attacking zone, and this person is up on their feet. Potential breakaway? Up on their feet? Player gets checked? Up on their feet. Do not sit behind this person. If you are a season ticket holder, and so are they – be prepared to not see half the season.
Notes: Often seen with their hands pointing in a random direction, a bit like a semaphore operator. Scientists are still working on why.

14. The “0 to 100 as soon as there’s roughing” Person
[Hockius Fandidium Pugna Loverium]
Location: Mysteriously appearing at the glass nearest to wherever the roughing/fighting takes place.
Behaviour/Description: They can be swiping through their phone, drinking a beer, or staring into middle distance… until the players start to “dance”. Then not even a herd of 100 wild stallions would hold them back. Putting the Plexiglas through its paces. Until players are separated or in the bin…. Then its back to staring quietly, waiting.
Notes: Don’t go near them when they are having a moment.

15. The first out the rink – 2 sub-specimens;

15a. The Last train home person [Hockius Fandidium It’s a Longum Walkum]

15b. First to the car park person [Hockius Fandidium Smuglius Drivium By]

Location: both can be seen hovering in the last minute, nearest the exit.
Behaviour/Description: Desperate to be the first out, whether it is to catch the last train, or whether it is to allow them to smugly be the first out the car park. Regardless of the game score, they are out.
Notes: Don’t get in their way – nothing stops them.

16. The “I’ll have 200 raffle tickets please” person
[Hockius Fandidium Stillum Dontus Winnum]
Location: Chasing the 50/50 sellers around the rink.
Behaviour/Description: Who knows where they get the money, who knows if they have ever actually won. But we thank you for bumping the 50/50 pot up for the winners.

17. The Hotdog person
[Hockius Fandidium Naivius Withum Their Foodus]
Location: En Route to the toilets.
Behaviour/Description: Who knows what the premade, pre-wrapped, week old hotdogs are made of. Who knows why this person continues to buy them. We have all done it once. But this fan continues on and on, and with every hotdog, they turn a funnier colour.

18. The “cant see your jersey for signatures” person
[Hockius Fandidium Scribbilius Scribbilius]
Location: Outside the changing rooms, with multiple pens.
Behaviour/Description: Eagerly awaiting any player – whether at a pre-organised meet the fans, coming out of the changing rooms, trying to get to their car….. this person’s jersey is indistinguishable from signatures. More signatures than shirt. It is likely that this shirt is 10+ years old, and has been signed by at least 50 people. Maybe multiple times. Individual signatures can no longer be defined.
Notes: The jerseys are excellent camouflage. if you were to hide in a room full of  black squiggles.

19. The Legend
[Hockius Fandidium Dominus Legendius]
Location: Look for a crowd of people, they’ll be in the middle.
Behaviour/Description: For whatever reason, be it a courageous act, be it a heroic deed, be it that this is the coolest person you’ll meet. This is the Legend, the one that knows everyone, and they know everyone.
Notes: Example been the legendary Coach Kev at the Coventry Blaze. Here’s to you Kev.

20. The Polite Rage Machine
[Hockius Fandidium FlippingFlopping Darnitus]
Location: Usually near the child mascots, possibly their parents
Behaviour/Description: May be evolution, may be the set of circumstances, it may be the way they were raised. But no profanity shall be uttered from their lips, despite been incredibly angry. You will hear items such as “flipping heck”, “blumin wan…person”, “oh bottom”, “fiddlesticks”, “oh fu…r goodness sake”
Notes: Don’t laugh at them…..

21. The Chant Starter
[Hockius Fandidium cantus magna]
Location: in “the noisy block”
Behaviour/Description: Easy to rely on shouting machine. If there is a chant to be started it is by this person. When you speak to them, you often wouldn’t know. During game play, you know. Often referred to as “noisy” but its not noise, it’s the most vital of music mastery. The chant.
Notes: Ear protection required if within a 5 metre radius.

23. The Glass Smasher
[Hockius Fandidium Novus]
Location: By the glass. Obviously.
Behaviour/Description: For some unknown reason, bringing their two hands together in a speedy manner to make a noise is not enough. This person must move their hands fingers stretched against the glass repeatedly. You know where they have been as the glass is smudged up. No reason required for this person to start banging the glass.
Notes: Higher level glass smashers have even developed the tool of having fingerless gloves with a bit of plastic on, to make an even louder noise.

24. The Newbie
[Novus Hockius Fandidium]
Location: stumbling around, looking bewildered.
Behaviour/Description: Yes Rookie, there are others like you. It is important if you see someone that looks like how you feel that you approach them and speak to them. You have learned so much. Time to pass this on.

And finally – the Millar Masterclass –

25. The Football Convert
[Hockius Fandidium Boringus Footballdium]
Location: Can be anywhere in the arena.
Behaviour/Description: This is the football convert, they have seen the light. However, football is so deeply set into their mind, that they still try and do football punditry about hockey, often with a slight cockney twang in their voice (imagine the post man from the IT crowd in this scene). Can often be heard chanting “who are ya who are ya” and other football style noises.

Of course, a disclaimer…. Any resemblance to actual persons or actual events is purely coincidental………… honest.

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