Hockey"s cap trick tradition is possibly the most distinct tradition in all of professional sports. Because that those of friend that might not follow the national Hockey league as carefully as various other sports, a cap trick is as soon as one player scores three objectives in one game. To respect the player"s performance, the hockey pan in the stands will certainly then throw their hats ~ above the ice. 

As usual with old tales and traditions, how hockey"s cap trick tradition started is regularly disputed. There room three common explanations that the tradition"s origin and also all show off Canadian hat keep owners giving cost-free hats come hockey players the scored three goals throughout a game.

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The all time hat trick leaders in NHL history are

1. Wayne Gretzky - 50.

2. Mario Lemieux - 40.

3. Mike Bossy - 39.

4. Brett Hull - 33.

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5. Phil Esposito - 32.

 

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Image Credit: mark Mauno (CC by 2.0)

Many of you are probably wondering what happens to every one of the hats that space thrown ~ above the ice throughout games. Hats that are thrown onto the ice cream in the nationwide Hockey organization will either be placed on display screen inside the arena, given to the player the scored the hat trick or donated to charity. The Columbus Blue Jackets have actually every solitary hat thrown top top their ice cream on display on the key concourse of Nationwide Arena. It"s a succinct display; be certain to check it out if you"re ever there to check out a game. 

There are also various byproducts of the cap trick tradition in the national Hockey League. The Florida Panthers" rat trick is a legacy in which Florida Panthers fans litter toy rats onto the ice cream after a player scores a cap trick. This tradition began before the Panthers season opener in 1995 when right winger Scott Mellanby killed a rat in the team"s locker room. Mellanby then provided the exact same stick come score 2 goals throughout that evening"s game. 

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There is additionally the "Gordie Howe cap trick" i m sorry takes location when a player scores a goal, notches an assist and gets in a fight during the game. The term payment homage to NHL legend Gordie Howe the the Detroit Red Wings that was known both his fighting and also scoring abilities. Brendan Shanahan, another legendary player that played because that the Detroit Red Wings, stop the record for the most career Gordie Howe hat tricks through 17.