I am a passionate Montréal Canadiens fan.
The Canadiens are also known as the Habs. “Habs” is short for “habitants” or “the people” — the name given to the original settlers of New France. The nickname is generally believed to be an accident — another owner believed that the “H” in the logo stood for “Habitants” and it stuck. However…
To see what he meant — that’s the team logo below.
The owner’s mistake was and still is common. A lot of people assume that the “H” in the middle stands for Habs, but it doesn’t. It stands for “hockey” — as in le Club de hockey Canadien, which is the official team name. We also call it “Les Canadiens (or Le Canadien), Le Bleu-Blanc-Rouge, La Sainte-Flanelle,Le Tricolore, Les Glorieux (or Nos Glorieux), Les Habitants, Le CH and Le Grand Club” (thanks for the full list, Wikipedia!). Sometimes, when the season’s as bad as this one was, we may also call the team (or at least certain players or front office personnel) other, far more colorful names. 🙂
You’re probably wondering how a lifelong Northeast Ohioan with no ties to Québec could become a fan of a team she has never had the good fortune to see play in person. (I will next season — just watch!!!). I wrote a blog post about it you can read here.
For the record, my favorite player right now is Tomas Plekanec (if any of my regular friends read this, I can see the eyerolling and hear the “no? really?” in charming sarcastic tones now). 🙂 Guy Lafleur would be next among historical players and I’d have to think about who else to include.
Our season ended (with a defeat of the Leefs… YAY!) Sunday but hopefully we’ll get a great new GM and coach and next year will be different.
GO HABS GO!