The WHL Bantam Draft puts a spotlight on the ridiculousness of Western Canada, yet again

It’s that time of year again, when a couple hindered 15-year olds take the next step int heir hockey dream as they’re drafted into the WHL. For the kids, it’s a momentous occasion hearing their name during the WHL Bantam Draft – for us, it’s a chance to remember the silliness of baby naming trend in Western Canada.

I know name trends are cyclical and every name grew from somewhere, but over the past two decades, new parents in Western Canada are taking it too far. For kids born at the turn of the Millennium – particularly in the Prairie provinces –  the names their parents have saddled them with range anywhere from unique to just plain cruel. (**disclaimer; I have two kids of my own and I’m sure there are people who think their names are silly). Sure, there are ones that have cultural significance, but there are others that are just different for the sake of standing out. There is no better example of this than during the annual WHL Bantam draft.

The trend started to gain mainstream attention thanks to Deadspin.

So far this year, it seems things have escalated somewhat – names intentionally misspelt, names with superfluous y’s and h’s in them, an inordinate amount of surnames given as first names and the obligatory dude-bro fraternity movie names like Cole and Jackson. The Prince Albert Raiders got things off to a roaring start by selecting Kaiden Guhle first overall, and things only escalated from there. Here is a look at the first names of the kids drafted through the first four rounds – I for one, believe that the marketing opportunity of a lifetime was missed out on when Krz Plummer and Cross Hanas weren’t drafted to the same team.

To me, the most glaring example of Western Canadian parents being ridiculous is Cohner – “we want to give him one of the most popular baby names of the 90s, but we want him to stand out…stick an H in there”.

If nothing else, we have to give the parents in Western Canada points for originality


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