The subject of fangirls and puck bunnies seems to always pop up in conversations about females in the hockey world. How are puck bunnies and fangirls different? Are they different? Are there boundaries that separate fangirls from puck bunnies? These questions got me wondering: What is the difference between a hockey fangirl and a puck bunny?
I posed this question to some of my followers on twitter and other random people in the hockey scene. The responses were varied when it came to defining a hockey fangirl but were nearly unanimous when defining a puck bunny.
Most everyone who responded defined a puck bunny as a female who is all about getting with the players. Some also defined a puck bunny as someone who only likes the sport for good-looking men. MK (@One4theDagger) said that "[Puck Bunnies would] rather have the hottest players on their team of choice then the most talented," she went on to say that puck bunnies "ruin the enjoyment for other female fans by everyone now stereotyping us as a whole as puck bunnies." Essentially, the definition of puck bunny boiled down to a hockey groupie. No surprise there.
A hockey fangirl seems to be the harder to define. Some suggested no real difference between the two, while others described a fangirl as a dedicated, loyal fan of the game of hockey. MK said "A fangirl to me is a fan who knows the game, knows the players, the stats and details of their team of choice...but.. They still find players attractive like any female fan. The guys are hot, talented and rich. If a female has eyes and hormones, you can't blame them... especially when they are playing a sport you love." Jason (@Waffleboard) said, "The difference to me is the sex. Both are pretty obsessed with X Player(s), but fangirls don't make it their life's goal to have one inside of them. Or if they do, they're at least a bit more tactful about it and don't advertise it." Ian (@inflemingdunha) said, "Fangirls are girls that have mega crushes on players". Others said fangirls were girls who find players cute.
With vastly different definitions, the line between a fangirl and a puck bunny seems to be either very narrow or on the other side of the world. With answers, more questions seem to arise. Are some fangirls actually puck bunnies? I followed up with MK by asking her if she thought some puck bunnies hide under the title of fangirl. MK said, "I'm sure. Who wants to admit they're skanky? Especially if their friends are mostly fan girls and they're the odd one out in a worse way. But they're typically easy to spot out. They usually only know the hot players, how much they make, their birthdays, and where they hang."
There seems to be a gray area that the term fangirl falls into. Some are not anywhere in the neighborhood puck bunnies, but some are. Some are true female fans with eyes and the ability to notice a man's attractiveness, and some are only fans for the attractiveness. As a negative or a positive, the term certainly strikes up a debate.