NHL's 10 Best All-Time Playoff Beards
Since most NHL games have been cancelled due to the lockout, now is the perfect time to honor the players—who have been blessed with the ability to grow superb playoff beards.
These NHL playoff "crumb collectors" are an epidemic, spreading to other major sports and fans around North America.
Hopefully, hockey will resume play soon and fans will be able to witness a new crop of players attempting to conjure superstitious man beards to aid in a Stanley Cup championship.
For now, here are the 10 best players—who have shown originality and style—or lack thereof — in growing their playoff beards.
Honorable Mention: The Straps
Daniel Briere's play rises in the playoffs each year, unfortunately the hair on his face misses the memo.
Briere's patchy, chin strap is a grand attempt at the playoff tradition but falls short with his Flyers' team—who collectively grow fantastic beards.
Luckily for Briere, his play does the talking and his Flyers' teammates can excuse his lame facial hair.
10. The "A" for Effort
Penguins' fans have to be thrilled Sidney Crosby's sad facial hair does not indicate his play on the ice.
The ratty mustache, the curly and patchy strap. It's so bad—it's great.
In Crosby's defense, he's only 25, and still hasn't hit full manhood. Lucky for him, his hockey skills allow him to hang with the big boys—his beard just falls short.
9. The Playboy
Henrick Zetterberg is the exact opposite of Crosby. He has perfected the "Mad Men," polished look.
Nicknamed "Zetty the Grizzly Teddy" by teammates, Zetterberg has one of the most famous beards in the NHL.
He sports a stylish wardrobe, perfectly parted hair and married to a Swedish model. The beard is just the final touch to his chic lifestyle. He's also pretty damn good at hockey.
8. The Salt and Peppa
Scott Niedermayer, the grandfather of the NHL.
His beard directly resembled his professional hockey career—old with a sprinkle of youth.
Niedermayer had an amazing hockey career with numerous playoff appearances. Each season his beard appeared more grey than the previous—like Father Time—but his hard play never seized.
7. The Galifianakis
Paul Mara's beard is legendary.
It's obvious The Hangover 2 used this picture as inspiration for Galifianakis's character in the movie. At least that's my opinion.
Unlike the movie, Mara chose to sport this epic look.
It's creepy, grizzly and works.
6. The Big Red Machine
Kris Draper was born to play for the Detroit Red Wings.
His fire-red beard and pale skin, go hand-in-hand with the Red Wings jersey—and unlike most hockey players, Draper actually grooms hims face to a respectable level.
The beard has been with Draper through a very successful career. Hopefully, he's growing the red beauty now—to encourage the owners and players to reach a successful deal.
5. The Villain
Zdeno Chara is a scary human being without a beard.
Now add the face whiskers and he is downright horrific.
With a slap shot well over 100 MPH, he has the look, the height and unearthly skill to be the antagonist of many horror films.
He's a nightmare on the ice and he also has one growing on his face.
4. The Clown
Can anyone take him seriously?
Mike Commodore's beard/afro combo is stylish for the circus and the NHL.
I imagine he also stayed clear of mirrors, while in the playoffs. His disheveled appearance matched his defensive style of play in the rink.
He did shave his hot mess for charity after the '96 Cup, but it was fun while it lasted.
3. The Cool Cat
Did Maxime Talbot just complete his first folk record with this look?
Talbot's playoff beard appears stronger and thicker every game. Lucky for the fans, the Pens and Flyers are regulars to the post season—allowing us to see the beard evolve from five-o'clock shadow to beast mode. season after season.
In direct correlation with his hockey hair, Talbot has mastered the playoff beard.
2. The Hartnell
Scott Hartnell is in a league of his own.
He has the personality to match his monster beard—out of control.
He's a combination of Captain Caveman and a Nordic viking. Hartnell rocks the best playoff beard of any current player and knows it.
He's cocky, foul-mouthed and stepped up his hockey skills the last couple of seasons, while his beard has evolved to elite status.
1. The Best
Lanny McDonald, we salute you.
What a great mustache/beard combo. It was dirty, full and macho. McDonald was probably known more for his walrus-style stache, but when the beard was added—the playoff beard was complete.
Lanny is an icon among the NHL and will always be remembered for his style of play and hardy facial hair.