MONTREAL - The Canadiens once again unveiled special St. Patrick's Day-themed jerseys.
There's a twist to the initiative this time around, though.
The jerseys will feature Irish translations of the players' family names, which were researched and compiled by Professor Gemma Lambe and her students at Concordia University's School of Irish Studies.
It really was a labor of love for Lambe's pupils, involving plenty of research along the way.
"We took the names we were given and came up with various amounts of translations, because there are various forms of them," explained Lambe. "We chose the ones that were more natural to the language, what you would see commonly as an Irish surname in Irish language, and we applied that."
Some of the players' family names weren't easy to work with, however.
When it came time to translate "Suzuki" for example, some serious debate ensued because a direct conversion to Irish proved difficult.
"When you can't make a direct translation, it's about finding the meaning. It needs to be either close to the original surname or it needs to encapsulate Irish language in its most natural form. With Suzuki, it took a lot of trial and error," said Lambe. "Suzuki means "Bell Tree" in Japanese, so we took the name and made - "Mac Giolla an Chloig" - which means "The son of the bellmaker" or the equivalent of the surname "Bell." That was kind of the half-psychology process behind it, because it's quite difficult when you're translating something that is untranslatable. It caused a lot of us to put our heads together and kind of come up with something that was suitable."
The Irish equivalent of "captain" is "Captaen" so Shea Weber will still be sporting the coveted "C" during warmups.
Alternate captains Paul Byron and Brendan Gallagher will trade in their traditional "A" for an "L" which stands for "Leaschaptaen."
In short, helping the CH was an enjoyable and enriching experience for Lambe and company.
"While promoting and showing that the Irish language is flourishing across the Atlantic as well, it's for a good cause at the end of the day and we were more than happy to help," said Lambe. "It was an opportunity for my students to learn, and a lot of new vocabulary came out of this."
Here's a look at the players' names translated into Irish:
|LAST NAME ||FIRST NAME ||MEANING ||IRISH TRANSLATION |
|Armia ||Joel || ||Mac Armáin |
|Byron ||Paul ||"at the byres" or barn ||Ó Bioráin |
|Chiarot ||Ben ||"clear" or "luminous" ||Ó Siochrú |
|Danault ||Phillip ||Daniel ||Ó Domhnaill |
|Domi ||Max ||"from Domje", an old village in Albania ||Ó Domagáin |
|Drouin ||Jonathan ||"coppersmith" or "traveling boilermaker" (from Old French "drouineur/drouinier", which is a "chaudronnier ambulant") ||Mac Gabhann |
|Folin ||Christian ||"fuller" ||Mac Fhualáin |
|Gallagher ||Brendan ||"foreign helper" ||Ó Gallchobhair |
|Kulak ||Brett ||"fist" ||Ó Cúlacháin |
|Lehkonen ||Artturi || ||Ó Luingeachain |
|Lindgren ||Charlie ||"lime tree" ||Ó Luingeáin |
|Ouellet ||Xavier ||"hoer", farmer hoeing the earth with a small hoe ||Ó hUallaigh |
|Petry ||Jeff ||"Peter" (first name), which means "rock or stone" ||Mac Pheadair |
|Price ||Carey ||"son of Rhy" (Welsh) or "price/prize" (French) ||Ó Príosáin |
|Suzuki ||Nick ||"bell tree" ||Mac Giolla an Chloig |
|Tatar ||Tomas ||Tatar (Turkish ethnic group) ||Mac Toirc |
|Weal ||Jordan ||"maker of wheels" ||Ó Faoláin |
|Weber ||Shea ||"weaver" ||Mac an Fhíodair |
|Weise ||Dale ||"wise" or "prudent" ||de Uidheas |
|Alzner ||Karl || ||Mac Alasdair |
|Hudon ||Charles ||"helpful" (from French "serviable") ||Ó hUada |
|Evans ||Jake ||"son of Evan" ||Ó hÉamháin |
|Youppi! || ||Exclamation of cheering, like hooray, yippie, hourra, wow, waouh, etc. ||Wú hú |
Every single one of the jerseys will be put up for auction to raise funds for the Montreal Canadiens Children's Foundation, which encourages physical activity and a healthy lifestyle among local underprivileged youth.
The auction opened on Thursday and closes at 9:00 p.m. on March 17.
Click here to sign up for the auction, or text "HABS" to 514-900-2220.