The light goes off, the goalie looks confused and it’s time to celebrate. Often it’s just a couple taps of the helmet and a semi-awkward group man hug on the ice, but there are times when the goal celebration can actually overshadow the goal itself. There certainly isn't anything wrong with being creative prior to receiving some dap from the guys on the bench. Rather it expresses the emotion of the player doing only what happens 5-6 times a in any given hockey game.
Prior to presenting you with some of the favorites, we would like to acknowledge the bow-and-arrow move of Luc Bourdon. Bourdon, who was a highly touted prospect, passed away in a motorcycle accident at the age of 21. He was a great friend of Pittsburgh Penguin Kris Letang who has done the move after scoring in the past [cf. this postgame]. Will this be immortalized in the NHL? Time will tell.
Here is a look at some of Pens Universe’s favorite goal celebrations.
Hamilton Police Vs. Hamilton Fire
This one is not a celebration for an overtime winner or a milestone goal in the NHL, but for a charity hockey game. As a part of Ryan's Quest, the finest in Hamilton, NJ gathered together for the second time to help raise money for benefit of the charity. With the fire department on the power play, a slow developing play turned into a quick wrist shot one time. Then this ensued:
Apologies to those behind the glass, but luckily there were only minor cuts and scrapes. Anyone who has glass shatter near them understands the anxious feeling it bring with it, but we can hope that even the spectators can laugh at what transpired. He traveled an awful long way to emulate what he has been seeing in the NHL. Jumping into the glass has become common place amongst the boys in the bigs. Obviously, the quality of the glass at this arena was not, um, up to par. However, you have to admire the passion on the way to the unfortunate ending.
Continuing the theme of unfortunate endings that make you laugh, take a look at Henrik Anderson.
What a move and way to finish by Mr. Anderson in this Swedish League game. You have to wonder how the landing felt though. Anderson sends his entire center of gravity flailing at the glass, above the boards and hilarity ensues. Let's hope that if he is compiling a highlight reel that there is a good video editor around that can cut out the celebration. Though with over 26,000 views, most of us would recognize what happened.
It’s time to get more serious. Well this is not really that serious, but the goal did win a game in overtime for the Colorado Avalanche. The fact that he made the ice surface into a pool was pretty clever, but it was the shimmy prior to the jump that really caps it off.
The goal was definitely pretty, and one would assume the defenseman that lost his skate is still lying against the boards in agony. Most likely an impromptu celebration, but there are so many things to like about it. Still it is strange to think that Hejduk came up with this after a grind of a long game. His teammates were not sure how to act either. Notice how Sandis Ozolinsh skates off and comes back in the picture once the team gathering has started.
Barnaby was known for being an agitator and getting in people’s faces. If you do a general internet search you will find plenty of his fights, it's when someone isn’t expected to score that the celebration provides pure joy.
The tail end of the video shows that Barnaby loved to play to the crowd. He scored from a crazy angle on the tap in and immediately went to the glass to share in the jubilation of the crowd. There is not a whole lot to the celebration, but that is the beauty of it. You can see more goal celebrations here starting with another example of Barnaby’s playing to the crowd.
This right here is classic and should always appear on a list of greatest goal celebrations. Despite the horrendous uniforms at the time, this goal celebration by a man that amassed 3,966 penalty minutes is admirable. David James Williams, affectionately known as Tiger, decided to ride his hockey stick and made it ¾ of the ice doing just that.
How can you not enjoy that? The enthusiasm and creativity make this a timeless celebration. No matter how much hockey is played, it would be hard to knock this out of the top three goal celebrations of all time.
There is a certain affinity for this celebration tied to the site you are reading, but it is the classic nature that puts it on the top of the list.
The salute is supposed to be an act of respect and was also used in football with great regularity. While some may feel that the salute was a sign of respect to those that came before Jagr, others felt it was showboating. In fact, he made a top 10 list for that reason. Jagr was a genius on the ice, especially in his time with the Penguins and when he scored, he put himself above the rest on the ice. A little cocky for sure, but when you're that good, you're kind of allowed to be.