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Here are this season’s five scraggliest NHL headshots

Jan 28, 2013, 1:31 PM EDT

Prior to every NHL campaign, teams put their players through a bunch of boring administrative stuff — physicals, paperwork and, most importantly for the purposes of this post, headshots.

The headshot is a curious thing. It’s not often used, so players tend to treat it like high school picture day. Show up in whatever shape you’re in, completely oblivious to the fact someone is going to capture your image, sit down, stare at the camera and hope it turns out, you know, not awful.

Of course, the whole “show up in whatever shape you’re in” part can lead to some, uh, interesting results.

Like in the case of the following five NHLers:

Brent Burns

This one has been making the rounds for a while (see here) so there’s really no need to go into great detail about the bushman of San Jose.

Here he be:


Greg Zanon

I like the juxtaposition at play. How can one man’s head be so immaculately clean, yet his beard look like it was glued on, then sent through a wind tunnel?


Rick DiPietro

He may or may not have spent the lockout following Phish around in an ’83 Volkswagen bus.


Kris Versteeg

The strength of Steeger’s mustache growth seems to be in strips directly below his nostrils, which is weirdly fascinating.


Nikolai Khabibulin

And rounding it out is the ‘Bulin Wall, looking far more disheveled than he did in his infamous 2010 DUI mugshot.


Now, for an entirely different set of headshots, check out this gallery of New Jersey Devils. That is the cleanest-shaven hockey team ever.

We mentioned last year about how Brian Burke waxed poetic over Lou Lamoriello’s strict grooming policies, but just to refresh:

Burke (courtesy the National Post):

“When I played at Providence College, we played West Point, we played the U.S. military academy, at West Point. Now, this is the ’70s, we’re playing teams with guys who have hair down to here [points to shoulders]. Our hair is not allowed to touch our ear.

“Like, I just got a haircut today so that Lou won’t call me and tell me I need a haircut.”

Burke pointed to his freshly trimmed sideburns and continued.

“So we’re playing the cadets. We’re at centre ice and their guys skate over: ‘Hey man, what’s with the hair? We HAVE to do this. What’s with you guys?’

And we’re like, ‘we HAVE to do it, too.”

All of New Jersey’s haircuts are believed to be modeled on this example:


  1. crosbyhasgonorrhea - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:45 PM

    Good work, except that Backhand Shelf wrote the same article 2 weeks ago with 4 of the 5 the same pictures. I’ll give you Khabibulin ‘mug shot after a DUI’ look over Joe Corvo’s skullet.

    • islesjb - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:52 PM

      thank you for pointing out this GRAVE INJUSTICE!!!!!

    • Mike Halford - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:59 PM

      Yes, yes. I’ve been appraised of the post and have contacted said author. All seems well. (I also like ‘Bulin over Corvo.)

      • thecheeman - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:18 PM

        burned by ‘gonorrhea. not a good day.

  2. bcjim - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    Look like mental hospital escapees. Except for DiP looks like he escaped from a commune.

  3. illogic87 - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:57 PM

    Nikolai Khabibulin looks normal to me

    • axisofweasels - Jan 28, 2013 at 4:55 PM

      “goaltender normal”

  4. hockeywithdrawal - Jan 28, 2013 at 1:58 PM

    Brent Burns’ beard is just awesome. But Zanon’s picture looks like one of those old-school Wooly Willy games.

    Not to be rude but DiPietro is a frail-looking character, eh?

  5. augsburg12 - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:05 PM

    Silly me I thought this was a sports news site. Now fashion too. What’s next exchanging recipes

  6. robmar924 - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:12 PM

    Now theres a haircut you can set your watch to

  7. thecheeman - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:16 PM

    During the finals last year Lou also demanded that Taylor Stevens shave.

  8. martyb30 - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:17 PM

    I don’t understand the shot at ‘New Jersey’ haircuts. George Steinbrenner instituted the same policy for the Yankees….

    • thecheeman - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:19 PM

      Didn’t seem like a shot, and not much to understand.

  9. jaredphi - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:27 PM

    Nice Simpsons reference!

    That screen shot is of Johnny Unitas, whom Abraham “Grampa” Simpson preferred to Joe Namath, which Homer’s mother preferred due to his “wild, untamed, mutton-chop” look.

  10. thecheeman - Jan 28, 2013 at 2:48 PM

    Khabibulin looks like he should be smoking a cigarette and demanding to be taken to the Pancakes House.

    • ibieiniid - Jan 28, 2013 at 4:08 PM

      best comment all day

    • islesjb - Jan 28, 2013 at 7:41 PM

      phenomenal Fargo reference

  11. Woody Bass - Jan 28, 2013 at 3:37 PM

    Glad no one from the Lightning made this list

  12. swizzler16 - Jan 28, 2013 at 4:27 PM

    Now Johnny Unitas, there’s a haircut you could set your watch to.

  13. axisofweasels - Jan 28, 2013 at 4:53 PM

    greg zanon doesnt have a beard, he just put his face on upside-dowm.

  14. subzero00 - Jan 28, 2013 at 5:08 PM

    Burns only has 9 more months to finish growing the rest of his Chewbacca costume for Halloween. Personally I think he gets it done.

  15. muttbolts - Jan 28, 2013 at 6:05 PM

    Is Rick dipietro wearing Rosery beads?

    • letsgopens8771 - Jan 28, 2013 at 7:01 PM

      If he is a hippie, which is what he kind of looks like, then no.
      Although he should need them every time he is in goal for NYI.

  16. letsgopens8771 - Jan 28, 2013 at 6:55 PM

    My evaluations:

    1. Burns is the clear winner of this contest. Even Sasquatch is jealous of his beard and hairdo.
    2. Zanon look like a hobo lumberjack. His beard looks cool, and I can totally see him with a plaid shirt and an ax sitting on a tree stump smoking a cigar in the forest.
    3. DiPietro looks like he just got out of prison and still needs to shave. The long hair could also make him look like a rocker, though.
    4. Not sure how Versteeg made this list. The moustache is cool and so is the stubble, but it is not nearly as cool as when Matt Cooke had to be moustache boy for Pittsburgh. I think that more solid contenders than him are George Parros (Panthers) & Mike Brown (Leafs).
    5. Khabibulin’s pic is decent. Not as shaggy as the other men on this list. However, he does look like he had a few beers before the pic was taken…no pun intended.

  17. Foogos - Jan 28, 2013 at 10:53 PM

    I used to work for the Devils. The hair policy also extended to the front office staff. It wasn’t such a big deal to anyone… although I kept a razor in my desk just in case I forgot to shave at home, which was all the time.

  18. handsomepatrick - Jan 29, 2013 at 4:59 AM

    “That Joe Namath, those sideburns make him look like a girl. Now johnny Unitas, there’s a haircut you can set your watch to.”

    God Bless classic Simpsons

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