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What happens to the hats after a Canucks hat trick?

Pius Suter and Brock Boeser scoring back-to-back hat tricks raises the question: what do the Canucks do with all the hats that are thrown on the ice?
Brock Boeser celebrates his hat trick goal for the Vancouver Canucks against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday.

The Vancouver Canucks went into the All-Star break in a most unusual manner: with comeback hat tricks to force overtime in back-to-back games.

First, it was Pius Suter against the St. Louis Blues, completing his hat trick in the final minute of regulation to tie the game. Then it was Brock Boeser’s turn, as he reached 30 goals for the first time in his career with a hat trick against the Columbus Blue Jackets, then completed the comeback in overtime with an assist on Elias Pettersson’s game-winning goal.

After both Suter and Boeser completed the hat trick, hats came raining onto the Rogers Arena ice, though they were a bit delayed in Suter’s case as it was unclear at first that he was the one who scored his strangely-bouncing game-tying goal. Just one hat hit the ice for Suter before the end of regulation and had to be flipped away by the St. Louis Blues’ Torey Krug before an appropriately Vancouverian torrential downpour of hats after the final horn.

When the hats hit the ice, members of the Canucks’ Ice Team rush out to collect them as quickly as possible to avoid too long a delay. But what happens next? What do the Canucks do with all of those hats?

Different NHL teams have different ways of dealing with the plethora of hats collected off the ice. Some teams, like the Columbus Blue Jackets, Philadelphia Flyers, and Washington Capitals, keep the hats and put them on display in a bin or case in their arena. A couple of teams give the hats to the player who scored the hat trick. The Calgary Flames apparently just toss the hats in the garbage.

But what about the Canucks?

According to a spokesperson for the Canucks, fans can actually get their hat back after tossing it onto the ice.

“Hats thrown on the ice to celebrate a hat-trick by a Canucks player are collected and stored at our security office at Gate 9,” said the Canucks. “Mirroring our lost and found process, after 30 days they are donated to local charities.”

It’s understandable that some fans might want their hats back, considering that hats are not the cheap collectibles they once were. 

While fans can claim their hats, it might take a while to find the right one. The Canucks have five hat tricks this season — three by Boeser and one each by Pettersson and Suter — with all five coming on home ice. That’s tied for the most hat tricks in the NHL this season with the Toronto Maple Leafs and, surprisingly, the Anaheim Ducks. 

According to the Canucks, they have now filled four “very large” bags with hats.

Fans who want to reclaim their hats from the Suter and Boeser hat tricks will have to do so before the end of February.