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Gallant Explains Origins Of His "Turk" Nickname

The Golden Knights' coach's nickname dates back to a childhood of chasing turkeys on Prince Edward Island

by Dan Marrazza @GoldenKnights /

Ever since Gerard Gallant first skated onto NHL ice as a Detroit Red Wings rookie during the 1984-85 season, he's had a certain nickname.


Even as Gallant first arrived in Las Vegas after being named the Golden Knights' head coach on April 13, he's insisted that everyone with his team refer to him by this nickname.

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He doesn't want to be called "Gerard." Nor does he want to be called "Mr. Gallant," "Coach," "Sir" or anything of the sort.

The Golden Knights head coach simply prefers "Turk."

For those who've been around hockey, Gallant's nickname isn't anything new.

Video: Gallant on being named coach of the Golden Knights


As something he's been called throughout his hockey career, Gallant and "Turk" are almost synonymous, although very little clarity has ever been provided as to "why" he's called Turk. recently attempted to get to the origin of this story and asked Gallant about where his "Turk" nickname comes from.

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"I've been called 'Turk' since I was four years old," Gallant, a Summerside, Prince Edward Island native, said. "I don't remember how I got the nickname. The only thing I can remember is my uncle used to raise turkeys, and he had them in our basement. He raised them.

"I used to go down there as a little kid, I guess, and chase them around there. One of my brothers called me 'turkey' and it got shortened to 'Turk.'"

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