Ultimate Hockey Gifts for Dad

I have been a hockey fan since I was a young boy, now in my mid-30s, the Toronto Maple Leafs are stronger than ever, and I still love the game.

So, what are some great hockey gifts for dad? You have quite a few options. Ranging from clothing from his favourite team to memorabilia and signed equipment. If he plays hockey, maybe some new gear he can use in his beer league. Another great option would be tickets to go see his favourite team, or even the nearest team. This can be quite pricey based on where you live. There are other local teams as well that play some high quality hockey you could go and watch with him. If you or other siblings player hockey, he may love a hockey picture frame with photos of you or his other children playing hockey. You have many options, let’s look at them more in-depth.

To make the best choice for your dad for a gift, it will depend on a few factors such as your budget, his interests, and location. Here is a break down of some of the best options I could think of that your dad would love. I covered all the major hockey gift ideas!

NHL Tickets

Buying NHL tickets for your dad would be the ultimate hockey gift. I can’t think of anything more enjoyable for a hockey fan, especially if it’s for his favourite team (and if they win!). NHL tickets can range greatly in price, for example, I live in Ontario, Canada and my favourite team is the Toronto Maple Leafs. The prices for tickets are absolutely insane unfortunately.

If you live in a popular hockey town where ticket prices are high, you may have other options. For example, I also live close to Buffalo on the border. As well, Detroit & Pittsburgh are within driving distance. Tickets in these locations may be more affordable. Maybe there are other teams that are within a reasonable driving range that would make more sense. Wait for his favourite team to play them, and buy tickets for that date!

The most popular place to buy NHL tickets for your dad would probably be Ticketmaster. You can search for NHL tickets or the team you are looking for. Select the dates and your preferred seats. It will return a list of prices which you can select from and checkout. They will email you your tickets or send you physical copies in the mail (I believe for a small extra fee).

Tickets For The AHL (American Hockey League)

Are NHL tickets for your dad too expensive? No problem! The AHL is another fantastic option with the highest quality hockey you can find without being the NHL. If you aren’t familiar with the AHL, it is the professional hockey league that has teams across Canada and the United States. Every team in the AHL is affiliated directly with an NHL team.

The AHL is used as a developmental league to help grow and expand a potential NHL player’s skills. Also, if a player on an NHL team gets hurt, they can “call up” a player from the affiliated AHL team to come play and fill in the injured position.

A lot of the AHL players have played or will play in the NHL. The hockey is excellent, clean, and fast paced. The hockey is generally very high quality, because these players are really trying to prove themselves. They want a shot in the big leagues.

Currently, there are 31 teams in the AHL, there are 27 in the United States and 4 in Canada. All players must be at least 18 years old to play. As mentioned earlier, the Toronto Maple Leafs are my favourite team, the affiliated AHL team are the Toronto Marlies. Just to brag for a second, the Marlies won the championship last year!

Please do not dismiss the AHL just because it’s not the NHL. The hockey is amazing. Here are a few reviews from AHL fans.

I had a fun afternoon with my Dad and my son. The hockey is good-quality, and the arena is ideal for watching a game

First time at a hockey game, and we had a great time. Bought cheapest tickets and view was brilliant.

The Marlies are an unbeatable value for a hockey fan in Toronto. My $40 seats were 10 rows back at centre ice. Great game too – a nail biter that the Marlies won. I will definitely go see another game. 

Looking to buy AHL tickets? There are a few services to do so, I recommend searching for your local team and visiting their website. You can visit here for a list of AHL teams and places to purchase tickets for your dad.

Tickets For the CHL Major Junior Hockey Leagues

Here is yet another great option for you to see some excellent hockey with your dad. The Canadian Hockey League (CHL) is comprised of major junior hockey players that are all aged between 16 to 20 years old. These are the best young players in this age range that you will find anywhere in the world. Sure, there are European or Russian leagues, but overall, this is the best youth hockey you will see.

The CHL is an “umbrella” that has three leagues inside of it. The three leagues are spread out across Canada and Northern United States :

  1. WHL (Western Hockey League) – This league is located in Western Canada and the Northwestern United States. It currently 22 teams. 17 are in Canada and 5 in the United States.
  2. OHL (Ontario Hockey League) – Ontario has a large population and produces a stunning amount of NHL players, it’s no surprise they have their own league. Currently 20 teams in the league. 17 are located in Canada and 3 are located in the United States.
  3. QMJHL (Quebec Major Junior Hockey League) – This league covers all of Quebec and the east coast of Canada. There are currently 18 teams. Some amazing players have came from this league, such as Sydney Crosby and Mario Lemieux.

These three leagues compete at the end of the season for the “Memorial Cup”, a tournament that is held in May of every year. As mentioned earlier, the CHL is considered the top junior league in the world, many of these players will go on to play in professional leagues such as the NHL, AHL, or ECHL.

The prices are excellent. My local team has a “family pack” that includes 4 tickets, 4 popcorn, and 4 drinks for only $80. It’s not clear to me exactly where you go to buy the tickets, I visited my local teams website directly. It also appears that Ticketmaster sells them as well, so you can check them out as well. Google is your friend here, use it!

NHL TV or Streaming Package

Alright, so tickets are not an option? Maybe there is some reason that you can’t travel or dad is an introvert and hates crowds. No problem at all! A killer gift for your dad would be the NHL TV package. I would recommend checking out your current TV provider and see if they offer any deals for a great price first.

What are NHL blackouts and why do they suck? Well, this is a great question. NHL blackouts basically limit your viewing to a specific team or area. For example, I live in southern Ontario and on my satellite TV I can only watch certain games such as the Toronto Maple Leafs (Thats all I care about anyway). However, I have friends that are Ottawa Senators fans, and they have a hard time getting this games. The NHL doesn’t allow them to do so at certain times. In my opinion, this is a huge money grab and I think it’s ridiculous.

How do you get around the blackouts? One option is to purchase a VPN. There are many options, such as PureVPN, NordVPN, ExpressVPN and many others. You pay a small monthly or yearly fee and install their service on your devices. This allows you to select a location anywhere in North America or the world. Basically, you are faking your location to get around the blackouts so you can stream. Here is a quick breakdown of the process.

  1. Get a VPN service. (ExpressVPN, NordVPN, PureVPN)
  2. Connect to a U.S. server location (Check their documentation)
  3. Head to http://www.nbcsports.com/live
  4. Enter a valid U.S. ZIP code
  5. Stream & enjoy the NHL games!

Does that all sound too complicated? No problem, the NHL still offers their NHL.tv packages. Blackout restrictions still apply, however, they allow you to buy a single team package. You pick a team, pay the fee, and stream all the games through NHL.tv. You can find the NHL.tv packages they offer here.

Just to remind you, I would recommend checking with your current TV provider first to see if they offer any other packages or cheaper options.

NHL Autographed Memorabilia

Some people may feel like buying autographs is a waste of money. For me, I love it. I really enjoy and feel connected to an athlete or celebrity when I own something they touched, used, or signed. Especially if this from your favourite superstar.

This past Christmas for my 13 year old son, I purchased him a signed photo by Auston Matthews from the Toronto Maple Leafs. In general, he is a very quiet kid that doesn’t express himself often. You could see tears of joy start to fill his eyes when he opened this gift.

Your dad is basically a big kid. What I would recommend is this, find out what his favourite sports player or NHL player of all time is. Hopefully it’s not Bobby Orr since that will run you a pretty penny. However, find out his favourite player and check out the authentic online shops to search for autographed gear, pucks, sticks, or pictures by this player.

The place that I enjoy using and trust is Fanatics Authentic. They only sell authentic and fully licences sports memorabilia and collectibles. They are licensed by all major sports leagues. You will receive a 100% genuine product.

I am not affiliated or sponsored by them in any way. I just really enjoyed using their service and got a great price on a signed superstar’s photo! Use their search engine to find the player you are looking for.

Here are some direct links to some popular autographs of players from your dad’s era, as well as some newer superstars:

The photo I purchased was in perfect condition. It was delivered in a sturdy package and came quickly from Florida to Ontario Canada. Highly recommend this as a great gift.

Hockey Equipment for Dad

This is a tough one, you have to dig in and ask your dad some questions. If he plays in a weekend league with the “boys” and has a few drinks, he probably doesn’t care too much about the quality of his equipment. He probably just wants to go and socialize and get a bit of a workout in.

However, if you notice his gloves are filled with holes or he is complaining about a piece of equipment. You should consider buying your dad some hockey gear as a gift. You could always buy online, but it may be better to go in person. If you lack experience with hockey gear, a store rep would be best to talk with. They could help you out greatly to find what you are looking for.

I am from Canada, so I am not as familiar with the retail sports stores in the United States.

Here is a list of large retail sport stores in the United States:

Here is a list of large retail sport stores in Canada:

Looking to buy hockey equipment online? Please note, I have never purchased gear from the following website, please research them first. These appear to be the largest online hockey stores in no particular order:

I hope the links above will help you track down the best place or way to get some high quality hockey equipment for your dad as a gift he will enjoy.

Gift Cards for Local Hockey Sports Store

Not quite sure what kind of equipment he could use? Well, a gift card may not be quite as meaningful for a gift, but personally I love getting them. It gives me the flexibility to go to the store or on the store’s website and buy what I actually want. I can almost guarantee that I will love the item and that it will fit me properly.

There isn’t really any special instructions to go about getting a gift card for your dad to buy hockey gear. Just head to the nearest retail shop or visit their website and purchase one.

Hockey Gift Items

Lastly, a nice cheap but effective gift for dads who love hockey would be some type of apparel or item. There are tons of places to find these hockey items and I will link directly to a few below.

Here is a list of cool items he might enjoy as a hockey related gift:

  • Thermos
  • Mug
  • “Hockey Dad” Puck
  • Pillow
  • “Hockey Dad” Sign
  • Picture Frame with photos in them
  • Socks
  • Shirts
  • Pants
  • Cufflinks
  • Personalized iPhone hockey case
  • Drink Coaster

Not sure where to buy some of these hockey gifts? Here is a list of places to look around:

I hope you found this section helpful and that you find a personalized hockey gift for your dad for any occasion. I bet he will love it, knowing it came from you.

Conclusion

Shopping for dad doesn’t have to be painful. If your father is a hockey fan than the article above should help provide some great ideas for gifts for him. If you know someone that might find this article helpful, I would really appreciate it if you shared it with them. It means a lot to me. Thanks for reading, good luck shopping! Have fun!

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