There seems to be something happening with hockey nicknames. Albeit, the trend of shortening a guys name and adding "y" at the end has been going on for a while, as has adding the "y" at the end of someone's entire last name. Also, adding "er" to the end of a name has caught on in some circles. However, it seems there's a new trend going around-- but I think it could be just contained to the Washington Capitals-- so I've seen.
That trend is taking a player's initials and their number, throwing it together, and boom, there you go. Like Karl Alzner is KA27, Marcus Johansson is MJ90, and Semyon Varlamov is now SV1, though you can bet that the number and spelling could change for Varlamov at any given moment. I don't know if it's more Twitter friendly or just a lack of anything better; but it's bugging the hell out of me.
Yes, it's a bit clearer when it comes who someone is talking about, but at the same time-- where have all the good nicknames gone. We had a time were you had Maurice "Rocket" Richard, Bernie "Boom-Boom" Geoffrion, and Jimmy "The Blonde Bouncer" Fowler. To be honest, I don't think we've had a unique nickname since Ray "Chicken Parm" Ferraro; thanks to the center-turned-analyst's love for the entree of the same name. Sure, you have some inventive nicknames that are seemingly inside jokes, but there's not many out there that stray away from the formula of adding the "y."
If anything, the initials/numbers scenario is much more creative than the normal formula. That said-- has the era of nicknames died, not just in hockey-- but in all sports. I honestly can't think of many nicknames that really stand out to me in any of the lexicons of sports-- that are widely known, mind you. You can have cliques who call a player something, but it doesn't catch on to the masses. Is that just a mark of the laziness of this generation of players or is having a nickname just not that important anymore. If it's the latter, then it's a sad state for sports and maybe in 10-15 years, someone can really bring it back. If it's the former-- I can understand that, actually and I'll let it pass.
Plus, it seemed that once you got a nickname, you were welcomed into the fraternity of a team. It's like "Top Gun" but not as many fruity undertones....or just as many-- I can't remember. While it gives you a bit of a persona, as unfriendly as it may be when given, it's a bit of an endearing thing and an acceptance onto the squad. It's something that is earned for one reason or another and not just given out willy-nilly because you made the team.
Granted, I'm sure I'm wrong and I need to get out more and learn more teams and how they work with the whole nickname ordeal. If that's the case, just shows how little research I care to do for these bits. Bottom line is that even if I'm a bit wrong with one or two players, the fact remains it's not at rampant as it once was, which could also show why we don't have as many unique personalities/characters in hockey due to lack of creativity when it comes to labeling a guy.
For now, we'll just have to wait and hope something can change and some names start coming out of the wood works. Also, not too long before the regular season starts and most of this filler ends. This is SW97, signing off.....oops....dammit.