If Maple Leafs wunderkind Auston Matthews scored his third goal around the 1:25 mark in the second period of the second period of his NHL debut against Ottawa Senators Wednesday night, the player became a hockey hero, and the thrilled Toronto fans celebrated a centuries-old tradition of hockey by creating rain caps.
There was a tuque that was knitted but the majority of caps that covered the frozen ice at the Canadian Tire Centre were of the peaked ball cap type.Some of them looked like old favorites worn, faded, and crafted just right. Some appeared to have been purchased in the morning at sports stores which can cost upwards of $50 for those coveted lids.
What happens to all these hats when the rink’s attendants sweep them up, then cart them away so that the game is able to resume?
What happens when a fan overwhelmed by the moment, throws their most loved headpiece across the glass but then feels a sense of regret post-party?Do you know if anyone has their cap back?The quick answer is yes. However, very few people bother.”Almost nothing,” confirmed Senators spokesman Brian Morris.
You have 2 weeks from the date you claim your cap
Once the hats are packed or placed in boxes, CTC’s guest services team holds on to them for two weeks, after the time, their owners are able to come in to claim them. To get their hats returned, the owner must provide the “specific description of the hat,” Morris said.
The remainder of the caps — the vast majority, as it turns out — are given to an organization that cleans them up and gives them to shelters in the area.
Different NHL clubs have their own rules in relation to Hat-tricks and hats. In 2010 they Carolina Hurricanes donated some 500 Hats for three hospitals in the area in response to a request from the hat-trick-scoring player Eric Staal. However, they only distributed the latest-style hats.
Some players would rather keep a few caps as souvenirs of their three-goal evenings (Alexander Ovechkin is said to be a cap collectors.) Some teams, like players from the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Philadelphia Flyers, proudly display their extensive collection of hat-trick hats in glass.
The Wednesday haul was’relatively modest’
How many different hats did the players win after Matthews’s 3rd goal at CTC on Wednesday evening?
“They’re not included,” said Morris, who described the haul of Wednesday as “relatively tiny” in comparison to, say the amount collected following Jean-Gabriel’s playoff hat-trick in the game against Montreal Canadiens in 2013. Of of course, Pageau was playing in the stadium in front of his home fans. Matthews was not.
Consider it this in this way Leafs supporters: you might have lost your favorite cap this Wednesday but you witnessed hockey the history of hockey. So, go out and buy yourself a new cap.
Hat trick information
The word hat trick was coined in cricket, in which bowlers who scored 3 consecutive wickets would be awarded with an oblong. There are a variety of stories about the hockey roots of the hat trick. One story is about an Toronto haberdasher in 1946 who promised a gorgeous fedora Chicago Blackhawks player Alex Kaleta when he scored 3 goals in Toronto’s Maple Leafs that night. Kaleta did and the tradition remained.
In the report by The Hockey News, items aside from hats placed on the ice comprise the stuffed animals additional pucks and fish, dead gophers and a bench, as well as bottle caps, faux rats Octopuses and even an artificial leg.
Fans who throw things onto the ice could give the team playing at home the bench minor for delay of play, but the NHL loosens the rules when the tradition of throwing hats caught on. More creative franchises are now encouraging fans to wear caps by offering discounted replacements.