Sometimes you watch a guy faceplant so hilariously that you can’t help but think of the famous words of the Surfaris:
The faceplant in question belongs to Patrick Warburton, who reprised his role as David Puddy from “Seinfeld” as the New Jersey Devils put on “’90s Night” at Prudential Center and played host to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday.
Puddy, of course, was well-known on the show as a rabid Devils fan:
Warburton was there for the ceremonial puck drop before the game, and he leaned heavily into his old role:
— MSG Networks (@MSGNetworks) February 20, 2019
The first 9,000 fans through the turnstiles got a heck of a keepsake of the event: a Puddy bobblehead.
Yup, this is a real thing that is really being given out to 9,000 fans on February 19 for 90s Night. Our thanks to our pal @paddywarbucks for always supporting the team.
— New Jersey Devils (@NJDevils) February 13, 2019
But as you’ve probably already sussed out from the headline, this was no simple “celebrity shows up, drops puck, everyone goes home happy” routine event.
No, in true “Seinfeld” fashion, there was something for Jerry, Elaine, George and Kramer to roast Puddy over: Warburton toppled face-first when he was walking off the ice.
You okay Puddy?! pic.twitter.com/NEJHdcyPTh
— NHL GIFs (@NHLGIFs) February 20, 2019
It looked bad, but he emerged unscathed.
— New Jersey Devils (@NJDevils) February 20, 2019
The NHL has sole possession of the sporting world this week, and the league is making the most of it.
Football is, despite the emergence of the AAF, still restricted to the weekend.
The NBA is off until Thursday after the All-Star Game.
And baseball’s spring training games don’t start up until later this week.
So for the NHL to have a moment where a TV nostalgia play and a Twitter-friendly blooper meet is the best thing hockey could ask for this week.
And for Warburton to be such a great sport about it only added to the fun.
“When does a guy in his early 50s not want to don the face paint and just be as big of a ridiculous goof as he can?” said Warburton on Tuesday.
Even better, the whole event raised $25,000 for St. Jude’s Research Hospital; Warburton refused an appearance fee, instead asking the Devils to donate to St. Jude’s, which the team was delighted to do.
And speaking of charity, the Bergen Record’s Abbey Mastracco reported another fun twist in the story:
This is Patrick Warburton, aka David Puddy, wearing a custom Devils’ jacket his wife painted. Marty Brodeur is going to sign it and then it’s going to be auctioned off for charity, with the proceeds going to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital pic.twitter.com/i1kxekxPlX
— Abbey Mastracco (@AbbeyMastracco) February 19, 2019
That’s a custom Devils jacket, to be autographed by legendary goalie Martin Brodeur and auctioned off, with the proceeds going to — you guessed it — St. Jude’s.
Warburton put his 15 minutes of ’90s fame into perspective when he talked about appearing on “Seinfeld.”
“‘Seinfeld’ is such a pop culture thing and it’s perpetual syndication,” he said. “It’s just unavoidable. As an actor, you go out and do other things and have fun, but I would say I may never do anything as high-profile as ‘Seinfeld’ again. You never know. But it’s mostly good.”
And this time, Puddy didn’t have to scare the daylights out of a priest to have an epic moment.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.