The tales behind Dallas Stars participant nicknames: Del Taco, Nacho, Sammy Sosa and extra
“Hey, Taco!” Oettinger referred to as out.
Within the reverse nook of the locker room, Oettinger’s greatest buddy, Ty Dellandrea, appeared as much as reply. Ever because the Stars went on a team-building retreat final month in Palm Springs, Calif., after the primary sport of the season, Dellandrea has been “Taco.”
“We had a break day or one thing and we had been getting back from golf,” Dellandrea mentioned. “We went to Del Taco as a result of we had been hungry. We simply went as a result of it mentioned Del Taco and simply liked it.”
Usually, nicknames in hockey are usually fairly uncreative. They often merely include tacking on one thing on the finish of a reputation, whether or not it’s a “y,” similar to Dellandrea being generally known as “Delly” or “er,” similar to Oettinger being shortened to “Oetter,” though that one particularly has an inherent layer of creativity due to the animal, the otter. Since Ryan Suter’s identify already is brief and ends with an “er,” his frequent nickname all through his profession has been “Sutes.” Including an “es” or “s” on the finish is one other frequent tweak.
There are, nonetheless, some nicknames which can be born out of creativity. Even a few of these undergo an evolution. The primary cause Dellandrea earned the nickname in Palm Springs was the “Del” in Del Taco being much like the beginning of his final identify. However over time, the “Del” bought misplaced within the shuffle and now the nickname has been diminished to only “Taco.”
Typically nicknames don’t even need to be inventive, so long as they’re handy.
“Typically there are names, like we had Jiří Hudler right here one 12 months and it’s a sophisticated identify to say,” Tyler Seguin mentioned. “So, we referred to as him George.”
The Athletic went across the Stars’ room to analyze among the extra attention-grabbing nicknames. Right here’s what we discovered.
Lundkvist’s nickname with the New York Rangers was fairly normal: Nilsy. In Dallas, although, it modified.
“Right here it’s Lundy, or they name me Hank,” Lundkvist mentioned. “Don’t ask me why. I feel it was my first week and I sat for breakfast with Chubbs (Jamie Benn) and Seggy and so they had been like, ‘Yeah, we’re going to name you Hank,’ so, yeah, in right here, I’m Hank.”
Clearly, the nickname comes from Lundkvist’s final identify being comparable his fellow Swede and New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist. As Wyatt Johnston remarked when he overheard the dialog: “You simply bought inducted into the Corridor of Fame!”
The purpose of dispute, although, is the place the nickname originated from. Lundkvist recollects first listening to it from Benn and Seguin in his first week in Dallas, however anyone else claims to have provide you with it.
“I got here up with Hank,” Oettinger mentioned. “I get credit score for that.”
On condition that Oettinger idolized Lundqvist rising up, he deserves the good thing about the doubt.
Johnny is the simple nickname that Johnston generally solutions to.
“That’s simply the stereotypical nickname they offer you everytime you go wherever,” Johnston mentioned.
However when Johnston was a 19-year-old rookie final 12 months, he was requested by the group what his center identify was. Johnston disclosed his nickname and it caught on rapidly.
“Chubbs was the primary one to name me Henry,” Johnston mentioned. “He caught with it. Just a few guys will name me Henry. It’s sort of caught on. I prefer it.”
Johnston mentioned he’s by no means been known as Henry earlier than. His earlier nicknames had been performed off of his final identify, starting with merely being known as “W.” That turned a mouthful, although, particularly on the ice when issues are occurring quick, so it bought diminished to “Dub.”
“I used to be Dub for some time,” Johnston mentioned. “Like, Dub or Dubs. Dibs. 1,000,000 completely different performs on that.”
A newcomer to Dallas, Metal has a fairly brief and easy identify. As simple as Sam is, many gamers don’t actually want to name any of their teammates simply by their first identify. For a lot of North Individuals, it’s extra frequent to try this with European gamers, similar to Miro for Miro Heiskanen, however not as flavorful with a primary identify like Sam.
Enter, Sammy Sosa, after the previous baseball star.
“It began final 12 months (in Minnesota),” Metal mentioned. “I need to say it was (Matt) Dumba. He began calling me that and it sort of caught on. Guys right here had been asking me what they had been calling me in Minny.”
Now, there’s a wide range of choices for Metal’s teammates in Dallas.
“It’s Sam, Sammy, Steeler, Sosa, Sammy Sosa, Soss,” Metal mentioned. “I reply to all of them.”
Metal mentioned that the primary time a nickname so out of the field, like Sammy Sosa, will get going, it will probably take a bit little bit of time to be taught to reply to it.
“The primary couple of instances, however you get used to it fast,” Metal mentioned. “You’re across the guys a lot, you get used to it.”
Sticking with the theme of Mexican meals, Joel Hanley is usually known as “Nacho.”
One of many assistant coaches within the Rick Bowness regime was Derek Laxdal, who ran the facility play. Joe Pavelski was a participant Laxdal interacted with greater than Hanley. Due to the primary three letter of Hanley’s first identify, gamers would joke and say that Hanley was “not Joe.”
“His identify was not Joe, and it feels like nacho,” Seguin mentioned. “It caught.”
The simplest model of Seguin’s nickname is the lazy addition of “y” to the top and being often known as Seggy. Whereas that’s one model, there’s an evolution to it.
“Segs, Seggy, Seggo,” Seguin mentioned. “It’s Seggo recently, and that’s from (Alexander Radulov). Rads would simply stroll into the room typically simply going loopy, screaming, “SEGOOOOOO!”
Seguin mentioned his dad’s nickname has been Seggy, but when they’re collectively in public, they’ll each reply to it.
“He’s recognized to be Seggy, I’m Segs or Seggo,” Seguin mentioned.
One would assume that Evgenii Dadonov has a fairly easy nickname, going from Dadonov to Daddy. That is likely one of the hottest references that’s used to check with him, however it’s removed from the one one. The frequent theme is the shortening of the second half of his final identify and attempting all types of letters on the finish of “Dad.” This consists of: Daddo, Dadda, Dads and Daddy.
“Whenever you go to a brand new group, it mixes it up,” Dadonov mentioned. “I bear in mind Chris Wideman referred to as me Dandy on a regular basis. Guys all the time attempt to provide you with one thing. Pavs calls me Papi typically. I don’t know, from Dad or Daddy to Papa to Papi.”
Papa is a standard one from Dadonov amongst Russians as a result of the literal translation of the phrase “dad” in Russian is “papa.”
Ever since Jamie Benn has been in Dallas, he’s been known as Chubbs. When requested about it, Benn declined to speak about it however did say that “solely sure individuals are allowed to name me that.”
“You’re not one among them,” Benn mentioned.
Tyson Barrie, who’s a defenseman for the Nashville Predators, grew up with Benn, performed junior hockey with him and stays one among his closest associates, mentioned the origins of the nickname is strictly what one would think about.
“That occurred as a result of he was fats when he was youthful,” Barrie mentioned with amusing. “There’s not far more you may say apart from his brother (Jordie Benn) was shredded and in actually good condition and Chubbs was simply sort of chubs. It was a chubby Benn.
“That’s been round a very long time. I don’t assume it’s important to look a lot additional than physique weight on that one. It sort of caught with him, clearly. He shed the infant fats however the nickname by no means left him.”
Barrie mentioned Benn was by no means offended and all the time embraced the nickname.
“It’s sort of Benny’s persona. He’s a fairly easy-going, good humorousness man,” Barrie mentioned. “So long as all the pieces is finished with the best intention, he can just about roll with something. … There’s not many individuals that will disrespect Jamie, and Chubbs was simply sort of a fun-loving nickname.”
The frequent nickname for Faksa in Dallas is Faks, only a shortened model of his final identify. In his residence nation of Czech Republic, Faksa would usually be referred to as “Charge-koos.” That nickname didn’t actually catch on in Dallas till fellow Czech Roman Polak turned a teammate of Faksa and referred to as him that.
“Everybody appreciated it in order that they began calling me ‘Charge-koos,’” Faksa mentioned.
Ultimately, that turned “Charge-koo-seena.”
“Rads was all the time altering the nicknames a bit bit to the Russian variations, so he was saying ‘Charge-koo-seena,’” Faksa mentioned. “Rads all the time made completely different variations of the nicknames.”
• Pavelski typically goes from Pav or Pavs to Pov. “We had been giving it a bit European combine to him,” Seguin mentioned.
• Marchment is usually known as Mush, which is a nickname that his late father and former NHLer, Bryan Marchment, wore as properly. Marchment mentioned that nickname really started together with his grandfather.
• Matt Duchene is often simply diminished to Dutch or Dutchy and typically prolonged to Dutch Oven. There was a brand new addition, although.
“Chummer is one I bought lately as a result of I name everybody Chum or Chummer,” Duchene mentioned. “It’s one other phrase for buddy again residence, folks name one another Chum or Chummer, so some folks name me that, too. … I’ve my very own set of lingo from my hometown, so guys are beginning to decide up on it and assume it’s sort of humorous so it’s sort of changing into sort of a bit factor for us.”
• Jason Robertson is shortened to Robo, which is then performed up as a robotic for advertising functions.
• Thomas Harley is simply Harls, however he was generally known as T-Bone in junior hockey.
• Scott Wedgewood is both shortened to Wedge or Wedgey, or prolonged to Wedgewall.
• Esa Lindell is both referred to as by his first identify or known as “Lindy.” Roope Hintz has a number of completely different performs on his first identify, both it’s Roops or Roop. Jani Hakanpää is shortened to Hawk.
“I assume everyone simply checked out my identify and so they had been like, ‘We bought to get one thing a bit simpler going,’” Hakanpää mentioned. “Some guys simply write it ‘Hak’ after which some folks write it as a hen and add the W. It sounds the identical however after I get a textual content from anyone, I do know which one they’re utilizing.”
(Photograph: Matthew Pearce / Icon Sportswire through Getty Photos)