How ‘All the Small Things’ Became a Thing For the Colorado Avalanche

Written By Ken Pomponio on 06/16/2022 - Last Updated on January 25, 2023

All The Small Things is quite the thing for the Colorado Avalanche and its fans.

Singing along to the 23-year-old Blink-182 song has been a Ball Arena tradition for three years now.

On Wednesday night, it took the national stage in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.

Game 1 hype video lead-in adds punch

The Avs and Tampa Bay Lightning were tied at 3 halfway through the third period Wednesday.

Suddenly a video clip appeared on the Ball Arena Jumbotron.

It was Blink-182 bassist and co-lead singer Mark Hoppus with a short shoutout and hype message for the sellout crowd.

Then the chords of the All The Small Things chorus kicked in. The Avs faithful took it from there.

With the crowd standing and belting out the words, Canadian network Sportsnet commentators wisely took a 20-second pause.

Cameras panned over the hyped crowd as the 20,000-strong rendition ended with a raucous cheer.

“The temperature is rising,” a Sportsnet commentator said.

Welcome, hockey world, to the Centennial State’s custom of All The Small Things.

DJ’s spontaneous idea catches on quickly

So how did a two decades old pop song become an unofficial NHL anthem?

According to a recent article posted on the Avalanche’s website, it was simple spontaneity.

In the fall of 2019, Avs team disc jockey Craig “DJ Triple T” Turney was brainstorming new ways to engage the home crowd, the story says.

An idea struck while listening to a “throwback” radio station playing in his car.

It was, of course, All The Small Things.

Originally released as a single in January 2000, the song was included on Blink-182’s 1999 studio album, Enema of the State. It became the band’s only top-40 single, reaching No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

“What a song right?” Turney recalls in the article. “You don’t even have to like rock. That song is just one of those feel-good universal tunes that you can’t help but sing along to.”

During a stoppage in the ensuing Avs home game, Turney decided to give ATST a test spin.

It was an immediate hit.

And Turney and Avalanche Director of Game Presentation Steve Johnston soon settled on playing the song during a stoppage midway through the third period, the article explains.

Familiar song a slice of normalcy during COVID

ATST was catching on fast as the season moved into 2020.

But then the COVID-19 pandemic hit. And the season was paused.

The Avs didn’t resume play until that summer. But that was in the fanless bubble environment of Edmonton, Alberta.

Turney, though, was more determined than ever to keep All the Small Things an Avs thing.

He sent the team’s song playlist to the game DJ in Edmonton with specific instructions on when and how to play the song.

The Canadian DJ came through. 

And ATST helped give the Avs players — and fans watching on TV — a small slice of missing normalcy.

‘It’s been louder than ever’

Play resumed in the Mile High City in the 2020-21 season. 

All The Small Things was back as well.

It certainly hasn’t hurt that the Avs have been one of the NHL’s best at home during that span. Over the last last two regular seasons, Colorado is 54-15 (.783) at Ball Arena with six of those losses  coming in overtime.

Naturally, ATST has become a hit with the Avs players as well.

Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog explained in the team website article:

“Post-COVID it’s been electric and especially this season has been awesome,” he said. “It’s been louder than ever. It seems like they finish the entire song almost if they can. I’ve been noticing that even in the playoffs, a lot of other teams have been picking up the same thing and have been playing popular songs and letting the crowd finish it. If you’re on the ice and you’re playing, you’re not necessarily thinking about it. But if you’re on the bench and you’ve got some time to sit there, you notice it. That’s kind of our song now. It’s pretty electric when they do it.”

A Hockey News video tweet featuring Game 1’s rendition caught the attention Thursday of Blink-182 founder and former lead vocalist Tom DeLonge

All The Small Things may have had an innocuous start.

But it’s no small thing any longer.

Just wait for the third period of Game 2 Saturday night, live from Ball Arena.

Photo by AP / John Locher
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Ken Pomponio

Ken is a fourth-generation Coloradan and career sports journalist with more than 30 years covering the gamut from the preps to the pros. A lifelong Front Range resident and son of 1960s Denver Broncos season-ticket holders, he is a long-time sports betting enthusiast whose insight and passion shine through in his coverage at PlayColorado.

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