Thursday, December 08, 2016

On the schneid

I heard from Dan in Traverse City. I often hear the term on the schneid used in reference to a losing streak in hockey. Mickey Redmond, broadcast analyst for the Detroit Red Wings, uses it a lot. Where did schneid come from?”

The word “schneid” is found in many sports other than hockey, but in all cases, the meaning is the same. If a player is on the schneid, he is on a losing streak. If he is off the schneid, he has finally broken that streak by winning a game.

The term is probably a shortened version of schneider, the German word for a tailor. Schneider comes from a card game called Skat. According to an 1886 quote in the Oxford English Dictionary, a Skat player with 30 points or less is said to be cut from the game, or schneider. The comparison is to a tailor cutting cloth with a scissors. The shortened version used in sports (schneid) may have come more directly from gin rummy.

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