Hockey Dad Holiday Wish List

Hockey Santa

I know it’s gettin’ a little late, but here’s some last minute help if you are still trying to decide what to get the hockey dad who has everything. What to put in the ol’ hockey stocking hung by the chimney with care?

A Tim’s card (which you can now even buy online) is always nice and for some (like those of us who serve double duty as hockey coach) a Liquor Store card is even nicer. But gift cards can be somewhat impersonal. Overworked, underpaid hockey dads should really be rewarded for the countless hours they spend bent over tying skates, out on the driveway blocking rock hard rubber discs with paper thin road hockey equipment or feverishly scraping windshields with half-frozen digits at 5:30am in the middle of January to get junior to a practice he or she isn’t really all that thrilled about going to. I’m mostly beyond having to perform these terribly terrific tasks and have been able to strike most of them from my memory. Yet, I think it’s important to lobby for my younger fellow hockey dads who are dutifully towing the parental line to raise better, more well adjusted children and for my older hockey dad colleagues or perhaps even hockey grandpas who have likewise put in the time and are deserving of some small token of appreciation.

  • An industrial-sized box of Hot Shots hand warmers (though upon investigation you can apparently also purchase foot, toe and body warmers)…cuz Dad’s hands and feet get cold too after standing in an old-style rink in the middle of nowhere for hours on end.
  • Along the same line, though supporting an ulterior motive, get yer dad a nice pair of noise-cancelling ear muffs to naturally keep his ears warm, but also to block out the often incessant drone of over-zealous hockey moms, over-bearing hockey dads or over-used cowbells. Hockey doesn’t necessarily need more cowbell.
  • A certain hockey coach Dad will take a few bounces and a little luck here or there realizing this is something the Hockey Gods rather than Santa will have to deliver. Do ya think them Gods have Naughty and Nice list. I think I should be on the latter for the most part. Have only lost my cool with the refs a couple of times so far this season and never to the point where I took a penalty.
  • One of these new fangled unbreakable hockey sticks, which may cost a bunch up front, but could save a bundle in the long run
  • A coupla beers, a fews bags of microwave popcorn and the hockey film holy trinity — Slapshot, Miracle and Goon (though I might get some flack for this one, I thought it was hilarious). Feel free to follow these up with The Mighty Ducks, Mystery Alaska and The Rocket. Please, under no circumstances, accidentally buy or give Slapshot 3 as a present for anyone.
  • How bout a coupla tickets to a Major Junior or NHL game (Oh yes, Barrie Colts or Winnipeg Jets tickets if anyone is asking bout yours truly), cuz what else would a hockey dad want to do when he’s not at a rink watching hockey, but go to a rink and watch hockey.
  • A get out of the penalty box free card…or two. two minutes for roughing
  • An unexpiring coupon, the bearer of which, is entitled to a few solid hours of couch time on any given Sunday afternoon in the off-season.
  • A time machine to occasionally go back and watch the kids first strides on the ice,  their tyke hockey games, their first goals and to recatch their celebrations complete with ear-to-ear grins.
  • A frozen pond, a net, skates, a stick and a bottomless bag o’ pucks – simple perfection.
backyard rink

Ok, it’s no frozen pond, but it’s the best this suburban hockey dad can do on short notice.

See, we hockey dads don’t ask for too much.

Merry Ho Ho and Happy Shopping!


Hockey Santa image courtesty
Penalty Box Photo – Two For Roughing courtesy


I’m Dreaming of a Beauty Hockey Christmas

Having reached the front end of another frosty December, it’s time again to come up with a Yuletide wish list, assuming yours truly meets the demanding criteria necessary to stay off the naughty ledger, which itself may be a stretch.  Ledgers aside, here are few requests, submitted for Saint Nick’s consideration whether he’s listening or not.

Santa Claus hockey

  • A few pretty dangles, bar down snipes or top shelf lasers to wow the crowd and make dad proud.
  • The parking spot closest to the front door for each and every arena we visit for the balance of the season cuz if you’re gonna dream…dream BIG!
  • An unbreakable composite stick for da Boy – no further explanation required.
  • Don Cherry’s Rock’Em, Sock’Em #whatevernumberthey’reupto. Every one to date has been worth a watch.
  • A Tim Horton’s gift card of any denomination that suits his Kringlenesses’ fancy – pretty much a given ask for any Canadian hockey parent.
  • A Gold Medal for Team Canada at the World Juniors to cap an annual holiday tradition of watching some of the best hockey you will ever see.
  • A few friendly bounces of the puck over sticks, between pads or simply behind an unsuspecting goalie or two.
  • A cloning machine so I can be in two rinks to watch two different games at the same time or perhaps a life-PVR so I can just go back and watch what I missed afterwards.
  • A one or two Get Out of Jail Free Cards for use when a ref makes a particularly questionable call (as rarely as that may happen) and which I may use at my sole discretion.
  • More wins than losses and more smiles than frowns in either order, though one generally has a way or influencing the other.
  • Silver Stick/OMHA Championships for the Boy’s team and Lower Lakes/OWHA Trophies for the Devil and her mates. It’s my list and I can raise the bar as high as I damn well please. (Sorry Santa, I didn’t mean to use a cuss word.)
  • A cessation of NHL labour news until after they actually settle the damn thing and just get back to playing hockey.  How many times can you say, “There’s no progress to report.” I’ve actually said to many people I’d be happy going with a condensed regular season every year; assuming we still start in September.
  • A wayback machine (as a complement to my cloning machine) to recapture a few more of the memorable moments either the Devil or the Boy has had on the ice over the past 12 years.

That’s my preliminary list, such as it is.  Let me know what hockey items you might want to find under your tree or in your stocking?

Image courtesy of

Last Minute Christmas Wish List for a Hockey Dad

Looking for a gift for your favorite hockey father who has everything? Here are a few practical, but perhaps not quite so probable, items any dad would be thrilled to find “under the tree” on xmas morning.

  • A GPS pre-programmed with every arena, motel and Tim Horton’s from St. John’s to Victoria and north to Iqaluit cuz ya never know where the game may take you.
  • An unbreakable composite stick because at $200 a pop there is no more disturbing sound than the snap following an errant slash across the shaft of your kid’s twig.
  • A rubber garage door to withstand late night slap-shot practice on the driveway.
  • An instant, self-cleaning backyard rink to free up the countless hours spent leveling, erecting, flooding, scraping, shoveling and re-flooding for two-months of functional ice.
  • A pre-paid gas card for Dad’s service station of choice – nuff said.
  • For hockey fathers turned hockey coaches – The Unabridged Compendium on How to Deal with Hockey Parents Volumes 1-12 (also available as a 10 disk audiobook or iTunes download – please allow 2-3 hours to download)
  • The successful return of the Winnipeg Jets to the NHL.  Oh wait, that miracle was already granted despite the best efforts of a certain vampiric little Scrooge.  Would it be pushing our luck to ask for a playoff berth in year one as well?
  • The year long rental of a film crew to capture and edit all of the highlights of all the Boy’s games dad missed because he was at another rink with Devil or vice versa.
  • Free ice time. Hey…..I said it was a wish list and even the unlikeliest of wishes can be wished for here.
  • The Unofficial Guide to Bad Referee Calls detailing how some otherwise unexplainable decisions are made by the men and women we affectionately call “Stripes” as documented by the same – these are their stories.
  • A free night for Dad and Mom to do something just for them.  Like going to the local wing joint to enjoy a pound and a pitcher while watching NHL games on 10 different plasma TVs. That sounds awesome right?
  • A Gordie Howe hat trick for the Boy and a regular ole hattie for the Devil on the same day, witnessed by Dad, beaming inside with pride in a quiet corner of the rink.
  • An unlimited pass to roll back the clock to when they were but fledgling players with sticks acting more as make-shift crutches supporting their wobbly limbs; yet finding the courage to swipe at an oncoming hard rubber disk, only to heroically miss, falling victim to gravity and the cold, hard, frozen surface beneath them.  Then popping enthusiastically back to their starter skates in search of their little black nemesis for a second attempt and rejoicing as they nudge the puck between two mounds of snow fashioned into a make-believe net.

Please do add your own wishes to the list and I’ll see what I can do about passing them along to the hockey gods before the morning of the 25th.  Happy Holidays moms, dads, grandpas, grandmas and all of you who love the game for the game.