Considering you’re reading this site right now, I have little doubt at some point in your life you’ve checked your email to see a friend, or colleague, or even family member has sent the dreaded Leafs Joke. You’ll read the subject line that says something like “FW: FW: laffs fans…” or “FW: RE: FW: the last time teh leafs won the cup“, and you know what you’re in for. It all comes from that same vault of garbage jokes and pixelated memes you’re now accustomed to.
These piece-of-shit insults might also be verbalized at family gatherings or even work functions, and now in this golden age of information sharing, social media platforms have taken things to the next level.
But as tiresome as all of this is for us poor Leafs fans, some of these “jokes” – usually framed as digs at fan loyalty to the club through so much hardship – are better than others. It might even possible to rate their effectiveness.
Yes, it’s time to break down these down and provide a ranking from worst to best of the most common Leafs jokes out there.
Truthfully there are probably thousands of them, but once you skip past all the ones based in homophobia and sexism, there are about eight left. Here they are.
8 – “PLAN THE PARADE”
The ruler of the roost, at least popularity-wise.
In terms of circulation, this “joke” has no equal, and I’d bet nothing else is close. Its widespread use has made it easily the most unoriginal and sigh-inducing insult of all. Approximately 100% of the articles or news bits regarding the Leafs shared through social media by the big outlets like TSN and Sportsnet will have a comment/reply of “plan the parade lol” within minutes of publishing, and you can count on that. You can also count on it being from some guy named Todd from Medicine Hat whose profile picture is him holding a fish. This is the white Oakley sunglasses of Leafs jokes.
For the uninitiated, this insult stems from Leafs fans overrating every roster move and front office hire as the piece that will finally win them the Cup. Hence, let’s jump the gun and plan the celebratory parade. The basis of this might not even be false, since we are clearly delusional. But there has to be a new way to articulate this played out dumpster of a joke.
Plus, if you’ve been paying attention, you know the parade has already been planned.
7 – PICK UP YOUR KIDS
I really wanted to put this in last place because it’s just so…nothing. There are kids playing hockey and they are better than the Maple Leafs, apparently. That’s it. That’s the whole joke.
The only reason this one is a step up from “Plan The Parade” is because someone evidently took the time to type up this sign, print it, and tape it up in a real-life arena. Credit for the effort.
6 – FREE DRINKS FOR ALL
There isn’t much to say about this famous fake offer, as it’s probably a common thing for bars to use to make cracks at poor local teams or hated rivals. That said, it still gets plenty of play around spring time.
The Leafs could win ten Cups in a row and I still ain’t drinking Moosehead.
5 – CIGARETTE MACHINE
Alright, here we finally have a classic joke setup with a decent punchline.
“What’s the difference between the Leafs and a cigarette vending machine? The vending machine has Players.“
I can appreciate the attempt here, but unfortunately this reference material has become painfully outdated, as I’ve never actually seen a cigarette vending machine in my entire life. Using this kind of quip now would be a major reach, and as such, it seems to be falling way out of rotation.
4 – THE TITANIC
This joke, like the last, also had at least an ounce of thought go into it, and it has that same punchline potential if that’s what you’re going for [Example: “What do the Leafs and the Titanic have in common?”].
But it’s usually just shared in photo form, as seen below.
It’s a fairly popular meme, and I’ve even seen it used with other teams (albeit rarely), so we can hand out a few points for versatility. Plus I think there has to be something said for the Photoshop job on this one. Whoever did it managed to put the effort in to angle the Leafs logo so that it nicely fits on the side of the ship, instead of the expected pixelated copy/paste from MS Paint with the white square background still left in there.
3 – PLAYOFF BEARD
Not really much to get into here, it’s just a solid burn.
If you’re totally new to hockey, the beard tradition is simply players refusing to shave during the playoffs until their team is eliminated. As you can see, the Leafs haven’t had a chance to get a five-o’clock shadow in the past decade.
2 – PALLBEARERS
“It was Terry’s last wish that his pallbearers be the Toronto Maple Leafs so they could let him down one last time.”
I’ve heard versions of this joke for years, but in 2014 a guy actually had this written in his obituary.
This is a decent little wisecrack. Fans of the Leafs (or any other team in a long championship drought) always have it in the back of their minds that they probably won’t live long enough to see them win a Cup, but this joke goes beyond that to let you know that the heartache continues even after you’re dead.
Which brings us to number one…
1 – WAITING SKELETON
Look, I realize people are going to get on me for saying this is the funniest Leafs insult, but we just went through the competition and it’s pretty bleak. And my main argument for this one being the best is that skeletons are just hilarious in general.
Like, come on…look at these skeletons.
There’s not a person on this planet who doesn’t find that bone flute funny.
Putting up with these jokes (among many, many others) has been sort a necessary evil for anyone who cheers for the Leafs. They make their way into almost every hockey pool or beer league email chain, and the memes are big time favourites on Old People Facebook. This will obviously never change, but it’d be nice if the current group the organization has put together both off and on the ice can make some more of them become outdated.