Earlier this week, Pro Hockey Talk shared some groundbreaking news. No, I’m not talking about goalie changes or coach hires. Instead, we chronicled Adam Henrique’s crucial decision to switch to a mustache, bucking common hockey facial hair conventions in the process.
Well, guess who won Game 4 for the New Jersey Devils? The more sleekly facial-haired Henrique, that’s who.
Say what you will about this fun little story, but his teammates might take notice – or just an excuse to shed uncomfortable hair on their faces – as well. Tom Gulitti caught up with a few Devils players to discuss all-important follicle adjustments.
“What can you say?” Ryan Carter said. “It got him going.”
Improved aerodynamics, anyone?
Gulitti points out that David Clarkson shaved his mountain man beard as well. I did a quick search to see if there is any photographic evidence of this claim and came up with this, via the Associated Press:
That’s a pretty clean-shaven Clarkson.
Gulitti reports that Travis Zajac is also considering a change to the ‘stache, so this locker room meme really might take off. I guess there are few things as effective as a Stanley Cup final game-winning goal when it comes to starting a hockey trend …
Last night in Los Angeles, Kings forward Milan Lucic received a match penalty after skating the entire width of the ice to give San Jose’s Logan Couture a two-hand shove to the face.
Lucic didn’t hurt Couture, who had caught Lucic with an open-ice hit that Lucic didn’t like. Couture’s smiling, mocking face was good evidence that the Sharks’ forward was going to be OK.
This morning, Lucic was still in disbelief that he was penalized so harshly.
“I didn’t cross any line,” Lucic said, per Rich Hammond of the O.C. Register. “Believe me, if my intentions were to hurt him, I would have hurt him.”
While Lucic knew he deserved a penalty, he said after the game that he didn’t “know why it was called a match penalty.” His coach, Darryl Sutter, agreed, calling it “a borderline even roughing penalty.”
And though former NHL referee Kerry Fraser believes a match penalty was indeed warranted, Lucic said this morning that he hasn’t heard from the NHL about any possible supplemental discipline.
Nor for that matter has Dustin Brown, after his high hit on Couture in the first period.
In conclusion, it’s good to have hockey back.
Related: Sutter says Kings weren’t ‘interested’ in checking the Sharks
A statement from Raffi Torres:
“I accept the 41-game suspension handed down to me by the NHL’s Department of Player Safety. I worked extremely hard over the last two years following reconstructive knee surgery to resume my NHL career, and this is the last thing I wanted to happen. I am disappointed I have put myself in a position to be suspended again. I sincerely apologize to Jakob for the hit that led to this suspension, and I’m extremely thankful that he wasn’t seriously injured as a result of the play. I also want to apologize to my Sharks teammates and the organization.”
A statement from San Jose GM Doug Wilson:
“The Sharks organization fully supports the NHL’s supplementary discipline decision regarding Raffi. While we do not believe there was any malicious intent, this type of hit is unacceptable and has no place in our game. There is a difference between playing hard and crossing the line and there is no doubt, in this instance, Raffi crossed that line. We’re very thankful that Jakob was not seriously injured as a result of this play.”
Silfverberg says he expects to play Saturday when the Ducks open their regular season Saturday in San Jose.