Feature

Seven Playoff Beards We Want In NHL 16

by Matt Bertz on May 20, 2015 at 10:13 AM

One of the best traditions in sports is the pro hockey's playoff beard, a superstition that dictates players not shave their beards during the Stanley Cup playoffs. Started by the famous Islanders teams of the 1980s, decorum dictates that once the regular season ends, the players are committed to whatever happens with their facial hair. The results can be glorious, as demonstrated by former Calgary Flames co-captain Lanny McDonald in the image above.

With yesterday's news that NHL 16 is stepping up is manscaping game by introducing playoff beards, we wanted to highlight a handful of amazing beards that should be locks for consideration. Without further adieu:

Brent Burns – San Jose Sharks

Few players in the NHL have beard game that competes with Brent Burns. The rugged and talented Sharks defensemen/forward hybrid goes all out with the mountain man look, which is enhanced when he forgoes putting in his fake choppers, giving him an appalachia smile for bonus points. San Jose's roster looks to be undergoing some remodeling next year, but should the Sharks crack the playoffs, this beard needs to be given center stage. 

Cal Clutterbuck – New York Islanders

If a director needed a stand-in gunslinger while filming a western and all they had to choose from was NHLers, Cal Clutterbuck would be the frontrunner. When this reviled agitator dons this stache-heavy look, it's not hard to picture him with spurs on his boots and a smoking six shooter in his red right hand. On the ice, opposing teams are used to seeing this face crash them into the boards behind the play. We would love to see this look evolve over a playoff run.

Henrik Zetterberg – Detroit Red Wings

The Swedish captain of the Detroit Red Wings built his stellar career upon scoring and assisting on big goals at opportune moments. When the Stanley Cup playoffs roll around each and every year, this perennial participant is also known for his lady-killing good looks. Just look at that amazing manscaping. How legendary is this playoff beard? It even has its own Facebook page.  

Jaromir Jagr – Florida Panthers

Only hockey gods should be allowed to evoke legendary Motorhead rocker Lemmy Kilmister when growing facial hair. Ageless wonder Jaromir Jagr has earned that right. Currently playing on the up-and-coming Florida Panthers, this 12-time all-star should have more opportunities to flash this fantastic look in the near future.

Scott Hartnell – Columbus Blue Jackets

This bruising power forward shaved his luxurious locks and toned down his beard game when he was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets, but we know the old Bird Dog still has one great beard run left in him. Here's hoping EA pays tribute to this Top 10 All-Time Playoff Beard and brings it back regardless of whether Hartnell does in real life.

Scott Niedermayer – Anaheim Ducks

This hall of fame defensemen has been retired for several years now, but that doesn't mean EA Sports should skip over this Stanley Cup winning salt-and-pepper look. Niedermayer is a natural candidate for a Hockey Ultimate Team Playoff Beard Legend card. 

Sidney Crosby – Pittsburgh Penguins

Sid the Kid is undeniably one of the best talents in the professional hockey, but if NHL 16 included beard ratings the Pittsburgh captain would get a zero. Out of 100. Just look at creepy crawler resting above his upper lip. I've seen 11-year-olds with better facial hair. That's okay, Sid. You can't be good at everything. I guess you'll have to skate by with your elite passing, deadly shooting, and Triple Gold Club membership. Life isn't always fair.

Which players would you like to see get their playoff beards in NHL 16? Answer in the comments below.