Don’t be THAT Guy (or Gal)

It’s game seven of the series, you’re about to make your big break, and the crowd is chanting your name — except it isn’t, you aren’t, and there is no crowd. It’s just a game of Shinny.

Everyone knows that one guy (or gal) who takes pick up games way too seriously and gets rough and angry with the other players. It often seems like they’re trying to relive the “glory days” — that one time they scored in a high school game. However, while most of those players aren’t as good as they believe they are, they can be present in any skill level.

That Player Hogs the Puck

That player playing rough shinny

One of the most frustrating things about those players is that they were apparently never taught that “sharing is caring.” Rather than a team sport, they tend to believe that shinny is a one-man show. That player is probably the one always yelling for you to pass him the puck regardless of how good of a position they’re in. On the flipside, they’re also the one who refuses to pass to anyone else once they have the puck in their possession. Remember, they’re the star of the show.

That Player Takes Long Shifts

Just as that player hogs the puck, they also tend to hog the ice too. While everyone else is swapping out in shorter shifts, they’re the one who stays out on the ice for far too long. And to make matters worse, they’re coasting around half the time not even hustling after the play. Go hard or get off. Whether it’s because they were never taught how to share, or they believe they deserve more time on the ice for “being the best,” this is a telltale sign of that player.

That Player Loves to Argue

tripping during shinny

While puck and ice hogging are certainly annoying attributes of that player, some of the things they do go a step too far. For example, you may notice that they argue about everything — and we mean everything. It’s just pick up hockey, there’s no need to cause a scene because someone was off-sides by a few inches.

One of the most common things you’ll hear from that player is how everything is the fault of someone else. It’s never him that’s the problem, it’s always another player. Why did that player hit the beginner into the boards? They didn’t, the beginner simply got in the way. It’s also not uncommon for that player to walk out if they feel that everyone else is out to get him. These players typically can’t take what they dish out, so as soon as the argument is turned against them they go on the defensive.

That Player Can’t Stop Making Contact

checking into the boards

Occasionally arguments with that player can turn dangerous as they begin to take shots at the other players. Even in no contact hockey there is still an acceptable level of contact. Leaning on opposing players or gently nudging them against the boards while fighting for the puck is fine, but anything more than that is a violation of the rules. Some examples of contact which goes too far are:

  • Intentionally trying to hit other players with the puck
  • Checking in any form — including when defending your own goal
  • Hitting other players with your stick — including slashing at the backs of their legs
  • Aggressively digging for pucks in the crease while the opposing goalie covers it
  • Tripping other players
  • Fighting — this often ends in being banned from the league

Usually once these forms of contact occur that player will claim that it was an accident or that the other player got in their way/caused the incident. However, what really happened is generally obvious. Just as that player isn’t as good at hockey as they think they are, they’re not as smart as they think they are either. Nobody is falling for their “accident” defense when they have a history of similar behavior.

That Player is a Bully

Shinny contact

While some of these players want to relive their glory days of playing high school hockey, others want to relive their glory days of being king of the playground. Bully-like behaviour is a warning sign. These players aren’t going after the largest person out on the ice. Instead they often go after those who are smaller, weaker, or less experienced than they are. This is also why they tend to cry about it when someone else hits them, despite doing it themselves. They aren’t really tough, they just act the part.

If you come across one of these players and they continue to play in an aggressive manner even after you request for them to play clean shinny, do not deal with them on your own any further. These players are often looking for a fight and may attempt to antagonize you into one. Instead, locate your local rink captain and express your concerns.


Do you think those who complain about that player are the issue? If so, chances are you are that player. Don’t be that player, you’re not impressing anyone. And if you’re not that player, don’t bring them along with you either! Even if you swear your friend is a nice person, nobody will want to play with them if they’re exhibiting the behaviors outlined in this article.

Shinny USA

Shinny USA is an anti-that player adult pick-up hockey organization. We have multiple leagues so there’s always something to match your skill level and age group. There are also play days every day of the week, so there’s always enough shinny to go around! Sign up today and we’ll send you a response back with all the necessary information you need to get started.