Why is it called a hat trick in hockey

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The most popular explanation stands for hat trick is scoring three goals by one athlete in a game. Hat trick term is approved by many sports including football, rugby, hockey, etc.

why is it called a hat trick in hockey

However, when you attend an exciting hockey tournament, you may be confused with this explanation — seeing that fans are tossing their hats onto the ice. Is this the real reason for calling hat tricks in hockey?

Many audiences don’t even realize the hat-throwing theory still do it seeing others. If you don’t know that why is it called a hat trick in hockey, then scroll down this article to reach its origin. Also read out the related questions-answer.

Origin Of Hat Trick

The term Hat trick originates from cricket in 1858. All credit goes to H. H. Stephenson, player of the England team. He took three wickets back to back. In this honor, his fans presented him with a hat bought by selling the collected stakes [complete citation needed].

In 1865, the Chelmsford Chronicle newspaper printed this hat trick for the first time. Then it was eventually adopted in many sports. Indirectly, the hat trick started for Stephenson’s achievement.

What is a hat trick in hockey?

There are many controversies about how hat trick terms start in ice hockey. In the match, the audiences praise the hat trick player by throwing their hat onto the ice. It has been explained that this ritual started up among the fans around the 1950s when the National Hockey League took place.

At this time, many conflicting legends of offering a free hat to the players who scored a hat trick. Back then; this tradition was followed in some Canadian cities like Montreal, Guelph, and Toronto.  

However, the actual confirmation was found in 1944 when Winnipeg Free Press reported that the hat trick winning player would get official identification from the “Amateur Hockey Association ” by bestowing a silver derby hat. Alex Kaleta of the Chicago Black Hawks is the first player to be awarded a hat in 1949. 

Further, a store called Henri Henri based in Montreal rewarded hats to the players who scored a hat trick between the years 1950-1970. There are several stories behind this hat trick origins. We have told the most popular version where it started. 

Who scored the fastest hat trick in Hockey?

Scoring a hat trick is rare in the NHL [National Hockey League] game. It doesn’t occur frequently, you may witness it when something special happens. The first NHL hat trick was achieved by Harry Hyland while playing against a goaltender on December 18, 1917, very long before the hat trick tradition, so he went home hatless. 

Who scored the fastest hat trick in Hockey

The fastest hat trick was set by Carl Liscombe who was a RI Reds star and he scored three goals in 1 minute and 52 seconds in an NHL match of NHL in 1938.

This record was broken by Bill Mosienko who was a player of the Chicago Blackhawks. In 1952, while playing against the Rangers at Madison Square Garden Mosienko, placed 3 pucks in the net in just 21 seconds. He was the pro player of Chicago and it was unbelievable to score three goals this time. The second-fastest hat trick scorer was Jean Bealiveau who counted 3 goals in 44 seconds.  

In the modern NHL, the first hat trick was recorded by the Tampa Bay Lightning who scored 3 goals in just 91 minutes and this is simply amazing. In recent years, about 70 hat tricks are scored in each season of NHL where about 1230 games are played.

File of NHL players with the most hat tricks

Wayne Gretzky scored the vast number of hat tricks with 50. Below we have added a list of the best 10 NHL players who scored the most hat tricks. [source]

Rank NameSeasonTeams Hat Trick or more goals
1Wayne Gretzky20EDM, LAK, STL, NYR50
2Mario Lemieux17PIT40
3Mike Bossy10NYI39
4Brett Hull19CGY, STL, DAL, DET, PHX33
5Phil Esposito18CHI, BOS, NYR32
6Marcel Dionne18DET, LAK, NYR28
7Bobby Hull16CHI, HFD, WIN28
8Alex Ovechkin15WSH27
9Maurice Richard18MTL26
10Cy Denneny12SEN, BOS25


What is a natural hat trick?

When a player scores three goals consecutively in a single game and no other players score either team between the periods called a natural hat trick. If a player scores during a shootout, it won’t be counted as a natural hat trick.

For example, if a player scores two goals in regular play and the third goal gets during a shootout, it won’t be a natural hat trick. Natural hat tricks in hockey are rare and happen in less than 8 percent of games. 

What is Gordie Howe Hat Trick?

The Gordie Howe hat trick is a version of the ice hockey hat trick. If a player owns a goal, a fight, and an assist in the same game it will be called a Gordie Howe hat trick. This goal was registered after the name of Hall of Famer Gordie Howe. Afterward, Gordie Howe is known as the best all-rounder of all time. The title represents a complete player who can win the race. 

Final Words

A hat trick is a significant victory for a hockey player. When a player gets this victory literally hundreds of hats lay the ice. It has become a part of the NHL games. You hardly witness this special thing in the match. You may wonder what happens with these hats.

Usually, these hats are presented to the hat trick winning player. But the player obviously is not going to keep all the used hats. Maybe he often takes one hat remembering this honor. 

Next, the cleaning team gives them a chance to get their hats back. Finally, the unclaimed hats are gone to a local charity and they donate among the needy people. 

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Hi, I am Prince. I’m a semi-professional hockey player. I’m the founder and chief editor at “Hockey Ever”. I love playing hockey and helping players to improve their game and that’s why I decided to start this blog.

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