The playoff beard is a longstanding tradition in hockey. Players grow out their facial hair to help their teams win in the postseason. Here are the best playoff beards for every team in the NHL.
NHL Playoff beards are a longstanding tradition like no other. Every April, players from 16 lucky teams shave for the last time, disregarding their looks, their annoyed wives or their scared children, and put everything on the line for the Stanley Cup.
The playoff beard was said to have been started in the 1980s by the New York Islanders during their four-straight Cup wins. The team attributed part of their great successes to their luscious playoff beards.
Since the 1980s, the playoff beard has skyrocketed into a time-honored tradition. Every team participates in the growing season, with some players who look great and some who look terrible. The bond between beards trumps all else, and no matter how they look, everyone around them understands that they are doing it for the best reason. They are doing it for the Cup.
For the purpose of this article, let’s establish some ground rules. Rule No. 1: There are no ground rules. Let’s get right in to the thick of things. The beards will be listed by team in reverse alphabetical order, because why not?
Winnipeg Jets: Patrik Laine
Is it too early to call Laine one of the greatest Winnipeg Jets of all time? Probably. But there’s no doubt that before his career is over, he’ll be right up there with Dale Howerchuk and Teemu Selanne. Laine’s career is already off to a blistering start.
In his rookie season, Laine racked up 36 goals and 28 assists in 73 games. He got better in his second season, with 44 goals 26 assists in a full 82. In his second season, at the age of 19, he was in the Rocket Richard Trophy race with Alex Ovechkin, who narrowly edged him out by five goals.
The Jets had a fantastic 2017/18 season, not only because of Patrik Laine’s scoring but because of his ridiculous beard. Many Winnipeggers feel that Laine’s beard is the source of his abilities this season. In reality, Laine told reporters that it was a result of a bet with his cousin, Kimmo, but if something is working, you don’t mess with it!
Laine takes his best seriously. After taking a Roman Josi stick to the face that left a gash on his chin, Laine’s only concern was protecting his beard. Team doctors did a great job, and the beard remains intact for the Jets today as they battle the Nashville Predators in the 2017-18 playoffs.
Patrik Laine is going to be a very good hockey player over his long and successful career. When it is all said and done, Laine may be the first player to become the GOAT while looking like an actual goat!