When(and how) did Detroit become "Hockeytown"?

This is more a factual question than anything, but I’m putting it in CS since it’s sports related(sort of).

My memory is that Detroit got the name “Hockeytown” around the time they won their first recent Stanley Cup(1996). I seem to remember the commissioner saying he was glad the Cup returned to “hockeytown”.

Was it called that before? If so, how did this develop? When was it added to the ice at Jou Louis Arena?

I’ll add a little opinion part to it as well. Does it piss off other cities that Detroit is called Hockeytown or does no one else care about hockey? It is Detroit’s biggest sport.

It is just puffery. For much of the 1980’s the team was known as the Dead Things. They were not close to being “Hockeytown” then.

Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, Toronto is the real “Hockeytown”.

In 1972, Paul Simon put out his first solo album, with a song called “Papa Hobo,” which includes the lyrics “Detroit Detroit; got a hell of a hockey team…”


Detroit became Hockeytown because the Red Wings (not sure if the name was coined by the team, the fans or the announcers) were the first to start using it. Simple as that. The Red Wings were taking a cue from the NY Yankees, by buying up every great player that they could, and still struggling to win the cup…they got a couple in though.

It’s been a couple years since I’ve been a hardcore hockey follower, but last I checked, the Montreal Canadians held the record for most Stanley Cup wins. Infact, I think they are CURRENTLY in their longest drought ever, having last won it in 1993. So if any city deserves the title of Hockeytown, it should be them…although now is a bad time to give it to them!

Actually, Warroad, MN has the original claim to Hockeytown.

I always figured it was because the Red Wings sucked the least of our local teams at the time.

I think it’s because the Joe Louis Arena was nealry always full, and tickets sold for full price, regardless of whether they won a cup or not. The Red Wings have been a cool team to watch for a very long time, and have been known for great goalies and a phenomenal number of shots on goal.

Yep, and it is. When Detroit has one out of every 170 people in town possess an Olympic hockey medal, they can have the title.

I used to work for Marvin Windows - I was in the Twin Cities but visited Warroad a few times. They put their kids on skates when they can stand, they breathe hockey. The only time they aren’t playing hockey in their free time is when they are deer hunting. Dave Christian gave me a hockey stick. Neal Broten used to stop by the Twin Cities office.

(I don’t know or care about hockey, but I can’t imagine Detroit deserves to steal Warroad’s title - maybe Roseau).

So yeah, it happened when we got those Stanley Cups.

Eat it, Toronto!

I’m surprised no one has chimed in from philadelphia yet and extolling the virtues of Saint Semenko :slight_smile:

Correcting the spelling of the city of Brotherly Love