hit tracker
Thursday, July 18, 2024
HomeSportsThe most brutal tradition in hockey. Why don't they shave their...

The most brutal tradition in hockey. Why don’t they shave their beards in the playoffs?

Date: July 18, 2024 Time: 05:41:58

In recent years, the world has experienced a beard renaissance. As if imitating 19th century portraits, more and more men are growing facial hair, and the most desperate are even willing to transplant hair specifically on their cheeks. It’s already difficult to determine who made beards fashionable again in everyday life, but in hockey there is a time of year when you can’t live without it. Every year, in the photographs of the champions, we constantly see a dozen people covered with stubble at the level of a “Scandinavian lumberjack”. However, this tradition is much younger than it seems and not everyone in the hockey world likes it.

In championship photos from the 70s it will be difficult to find beards; This also applies to previous years. Hockey players with mustaches and stubble can be seen, but it is not easy to spot the overgrown ones among them: this is easily explained given that before the league’s expansion, the playoffs were simply shorter. The tradition of growing a beard originated among the islanders, although the evidence differs. It is generally believed that the origin of this custom was the Dynasty team of the first half of the 1980s, which won four championships in a row.

A few years ago, Isles legend Brian Trottier said this first happened in 1975. Then the Islanders, just in their third season in the NHL, came back from 0-3 in the series with Pittsburgh in the second round of the playoffs and almost repeated this trick with Philadelphia, losing in game seven. The players stopped shaving after the first win over the Penguins.

However, according to the generally accepted version, the beard began to grow in the early 80s. The players themselves cannot remember who started doing this first. This is often attributed to Hall of Famer Clark Gillies, but little does he know: “Someone started growing a beard and guys were like, wow, that’s cool! Little by little everyone started doing it.” “Some people just had their beards grow faster, but we still tried to focus on our work first. “First of all, the beard was a reminder of the purpose we played for,” said another player on that team, Butch Goring.

Now one step away from Florida’s goal:

Can I bring the cup to Florida? It seems that there is only one intrigue left in the NHL playoff final

However, hockey historian Stan Fischler believes that the progenitor of beards was defenseman Ken Morrow. He had a beard since he played on the varsity team and was the only player like that on the team. The defender stood out for this in the United States Olympic team, which would later create the “Miracle on Ice.” Head coach Herb Brooks, who banned excessive facial hair, made a special exception for the defensive lineman. Morrow joined the Islanders immediately after the Games and quickly became the team’s starting defenseman as they won their first championship. Ken decided not to shave his beard during the playoffs, and that’s supposedly how it all started.

Ken Morrow – possible founder of the tradition

Photo: nhl.com

The bearded Islanders (though not all of them) won four Cups in a row, once dispatching the Minnesota North Stars hopefuls along the way, whose extra facial hair didn’t help them win the finals. In 1984, a new dynasty was born in the NHL, but the Oilers did not adopt the beard trend. Some believe that this was due to the youth of the team’s leaders: Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Jari Kurri and Glenn Anderson were 23 years old, Paul Coffey 22, Grant Fuhr 21. In addition, beards were already firmly considered a tradition. associated with the islanders.

The beard trend is believed to have been revived in New Jersey. A team that had spent its early years languishing at the bottom of the table and being slighted by Gretzky made the playoffs for the first time in their history in 1988 and ended up with an Islanders that no longer resembled the old dynasty. Legendary defenseman Ken Daneyko said the Devils decided not to shave in honor of those islanders of the early ’80s, and New Jersey beat out the tradition’s forefathers! Additionally, the Devils won in the second round and lost in the conference finals only in the seventh game.

Hockey beards have long gone out of fashion again, with rare exceptions like Lenny MacDonald’s. The captain of Calgary’s 1989 championship team was known throughout his career primarily for having a magnificent mustache, and in the playoffs he added a beard. Keep in mind that beards were generally not fashionable at that time. For example, in 1981, Boston commentator Tom Larson grew a beard and his television station received thousands of angry letters; That facial hair was considered a sign of radicalism. Larson spoke angrily on the radio and said he would shave his beard only after Boston won the Stanley Cup, and 30 years later he kept his promise.

Well, New Jersey won the Stanley Cup in 1995, adding two more in 2000 and 2003. That’s when playoff beards became standard throughout the league. “I loved. I looked in the mirror and felt like Grizzly Adams (the legendary 19th century American bear trainer – Championship Note) in the wild. Bearded face, toothless mouth: I thought this was the ideal image for the playoffs,” said Daneyko, who spent 20 years in New Jersey.

There is another strange custom in the NHL:

Rat game. How the NHL’s most unusual victory symbol came to be

However, there are also “renegades” in the NHL. For every Joe Thornton who sported a full beard even during the regular season, there is a Chris Chelios. The 46-year-old superveteran won his third Stanley Cup in 2008, but he did so with a clean-shaven face. “It wasn’t a tradition when I played in Montreal and I never liked mustaches or beards in general. I always play clean shaven because Guy Lefleur always shaved right before the game and I copy him. Plus, he helps you wash faster than anyone else after the game,” the defender said.

Brent Burns wears a beard in the regular season

Photo: AP/TASS

There are also different perceptions of this tradition in the media. “Hockey is the only sport in which men get hotter as the season progresses,” a GQ journalist confessed her love for beards. But television was against it: the director of NBC Sports, the NHL’s main broadcaster for 15 years, asked in 2015 to abandon the tradition. “I know it is tradition and superstition, but the beard is detrimental to recognition. Let’s open the faces of the players,” said Mark Lazarus, director of the company. Nobody heard him.

Nowadays, the beard is no longer a superstition: what everyone does can no longer bring good luck to someone in particular. It has become a tradition that is automatically followed and that some see as an element of cohesion. Former Rangers defender Ron Dugway said: “It’s the little things that make the team cohesive. “You all do the same thing, you look tougher with your beard and you fight for the same goal.”

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

Most Popular

Recent Comments