Three Better Predators Playoff Chants

The Nashville Predators won their first-round series in six games. They will face the wily Winnipeg Jets in the second-round in what promises to be a well-watched series. Preds fans, many of whom live in a non-traditional hockey market, have been lauded for taking to the game and they nearly broke the Guinness World Record for loudest crowd at an indoor sporting event. But, let’s be honest. The Preds chants are boring, uninspired, and don’t represent Nashville, known as Music City.

Hear me out.

Nashville Predators are Contenders

Let’s get a few things straight. The Predators are legitimate contenders. They are exciting to watch and have depth where it counts. Full disclosure: they are my prediction to win the 2018 Stanley Cup. It is exciting to see hockey do so well in Nashville and fans get amped up about the team and the sport.

Filip Forsberg Roman Josi Ryan Ellis
Preds are hoping for many things to celebrate in 2018. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)

Preds fans have revived the odd hockey tradition of throwing sea life; in Nashville, they toss catfish onto the ice. They also have another tradition. It’s loud and it’s relentless. Preds fans love to heckle the opposing team – en masse. There are a number of chants that have gained some notoriety including:

“He shoots, he scores, you suck!”
“It’s all your fault! It’s all your fault!”
“We’re gonna beat the hell outta of you, you, you.”
“He sucks! He sucks, too!”

The chant you will hear most often, however, occurs after the Preds score a goal. If you don’t know it, here is an example. When the Preds played the Pens last year, it went like this:

“Murray, Murray, Murray. You Suck…It’s all your fault! It’s all your fault!”

Breaking Down the Chant

Chants are fun. Getting folks together in a communal celebration of your team is great. Can we agree though, that some chants are better than others? Let’s break it down.

“He shoots, he scores, you suck!”

If a goal was scored, a player definitely shot and definitely scored. We are all good there. The problem is, I am not convinced it was because the goalie “sucked.” Matt Murray who beat the Predators last year to win the Stanley Cup didn’t and doesn’t suck. Letting in one goal doesn’t say much. Bad goalies have good nights, and good goalies have bad nights. No goalie who is playing in the NHL sucks. Even this Beer League goalie rose to the challenge.

“It’s all your fault! It’s all your fault!”

Again, mercilessly heckling the opposing team like 17,000 schoolyard bullies IS fun, I guess. The problem is the basic accuracy of this chant. Very few goals scored in the NHL and especially in the NHL playoffs are the goalie’s “fault.” Goals are scored off screens that block the goalie’s view or deflections and tips that change the direction of the puck at the last minute. Goals get behind the netminder after they bounce in off defensemen or are scored off rushes in which a goalie’s teammates let them down. Is a breakaway goal, which is the result of poor defensive play in the neutral zone, the goalie’s fault?

Sure, some goals are the goalie’s fault. The problem is that this chant happens either way. It’s fake news.

Music City Deserves Better

Nashville is built on music and is a common thread connecting the life and soul of the city to its people. Music has been described as a fundamental pattern in its “…cultural, business and social fabric.” From fiddle tunes and buck dancing in the 1700s to the Fisk Jubilee Singers in the 1800s, music has a long history in Nashville. In 1925, the establishment of radio station WSM and its launch of the broadcast that would be called the Grand Ole Opry secured Nashville’s reputation as a creative, music-filled city.

Nashville Predators
Preds fans can get loud (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)

Live music can be seen and heard every day and night of the week in Nashville. The world-famous honky tonks on Broadway offer free live music 365 days a year. Last year, P.K. Subban had fun singing some Johnny Cash at the famed Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge. In Nashville, music is written, recorded and performed every single day. Music city deserves better than pathetic chants, whether they are shouted in unison or not.

Three Better Options

Steal from Your Opponent

While not technically a chant, one idea is to steal the Super Mario mushroom sound effect. As some fans know, after the Colorado Avalanche successfully kill a penalty, that is what you hear at the Pepsi Center. It’s a great idea. What better way to mock the team you beat in the first round than to steal their sound effects?


Fans need more than sound effects though. Here’s one idea: get creative. Game of Thrones will finish its run next year as the biggest and most popular show in the world. An average of more than 23 million Americans watched each episode last season. In one memorable scene in Season 5, Queen Cersei is forced to complete a walk of atonement. Stripped of her clothing, she is made to walk from the Great Sept of Baelor to the Red Keep, escorted by members of the Faith Militant. As she walks, Septa Unella accompanies her, repeatedly crying out “Shame!” and ringing a bell to attract people’s attention.

Preds fans should adopt this when their team draws a penalty. Imagine it, as the opposing team’s player makes his way to the penalty box, 17, 000 fans yell “shame, shame, shame” in unison. Short, sweet, and mean. It is a crossover chant that has already been used for other purposes. Get on it, Preds fans.

Look At History

Finally, instead of being negative with the “you suck” stuff, it would be great to see Preds fans get happy. What better way to honor music city than to engage in a song when the home team scores? What should they sing? When in doubt, look to your history, Nashville. What if you used all that fan energy toward celebrating your state. Lots of tunes could be used, but Rocky Top is a great tune and my pick for the Preds’ postseason. Recorded first by the Osborne Brother, it has been covered by the Everly Brothers, Lynn Anderson, and even Phish. Yes, Vermont jam band Phish.

Preds fans can and should do better as they cheer their team during what many hope is a deep playoff run. As great a story as hockey in Nashville has been these last couple of years, fans need to step up their chant game. Here’s the chorus to Rocky Top. It should be played and sung loudly and proudly when the Preds score.

Rocky Top, you’ll always be
Home sweet home to me
Good ol’ Rocky Top
Rocky Top, Tennessee
Rocky Top, Tennessee