By: Scott Henninger
Today marks exactly 31 days since the regular season ended and the Aeros playoff run began, as did the beard growing. Today is also Game 7 of the West Division Finals against the Milwaukee Admirals so everything is on the line. I thought I would take this “calm before the storm” to tally the votes and revisit the playoff beards of our boys on the front lines.
10 days ago, when the Aeros and Milwaukee were tied up 1-1 in the series, the “Blood, Sweat and… Beards?” story popped up on AEROS.com to help explain this hockey playoff tradition. In the last edition some awards were handed out and fans were asked to email in and vote on who they believed had the “Sickest Playoff Beard” on the Aeros roster. With the playoff series tied 3-3, the beard winner will be announced!
First, I would like to visit a few nominations that I thought deserved to be recognized either positively or negatively:
The very close runner-ups Clayton Stoner and Mitch Love received a number of votes apiece but they couldn’t hold up down the stretch. They both grow the chops thick and dark but what lost them a few votes was their manicuring along the neck line, which is said to not be allowed for playoff beards.
Newcomer J.P. Testwuide gets a mention solely because of a fan who knew a lot of stats about the DenverUniversity graduate. I learned he could bench 340lb., squat 420lb. and clean 310lb., his GPA and that he’s a “tough guy” among other notes. What lost him points was the attempt at claiming 13 votes via relatives that may not even exist AND a link to a YouTube video of Testwuide fighting my hometown University of Minnesota Golden Gophers. Not a smooth move but he does have a blog trying to gain him support.
Before I get to the champ I have to give a shout out to the Idaho Steelheads. Votes for three former Steelheads – John Lammers, Matt Climie and radio man Joe O’Donnell – each received votes for various reasons. Lammers apparently grew a sick beard during his Kelly Cup Championship season with Idaho in 2007, which Aeros Joe was a part of as well. Other reasoning for the PLAYOFF BEARD nominations were “cute face” and “blue eyes”. I won’t attach those to specific names since those votes were vetoed instantly.
The Sickest Beard Award goes to a guy who needs to shave by the hour to keep it clean but now, since the playoffs have begun, looks like a jungle on his face. Comments ranging from “dang sexy” and “gross” have come through but either positive or negative, Matt Kassian received the most recognition and votes in the process. His slight Mohawk haircut even came into play. The completely un-manicured beard, growing down his neck and into a hurricane-like swirl, earned him top billing. The after-practice sweat running through it really adds to the jungle effect too and will probably draw a few more “gross” comments. Congratulations Kass on your Sickest Beard!
Category: News & Views