Mark Madden

Mark Madden

The Super Genius of Pittsburgh Sports.Full Bio



The NHL doesn’t have enough true star power. In fact, it has almost none. 

The NHL has a lot of very good hockey players, but very few with charisma. Who really moves the needle? 

Maybe Sidney Crosby, Connor McDavid and Alex Ovechkin do. But maybe they don’t. 

Crosby isn’t LeBron James. He’s not Tom Brady. That’s not Crosby’s fault. But he’s not even close. 

If you believe every little bit helps, the NHL should ban playoff beards. Make it a league rule. 

Playoff beards were novel and cute when the dynasty-era New York Islanders launched the idea in the early ‘80s while winning four straight Stanley Cups. 

But now they’re a cliché. Playoff beards used to be a feature story. Now they’re just a note. 

Playoff beards aren’t good luck. Every team grows playoff beards, but only one wins the Stanley Cup. Playoff beards will have been bad luck for 23 teams in these playoffs. The Penguins got eliminated before you could see much growth, if any. 

All playoff beards do is make the players unidentifiable and anonymous. Like a bunch of bums on a street corner panhandling for loose change. Zero charisma. 

Dallas’ Joe Pavelski is having a terrific playoff: Eight goals. Too bad he looks like a guy who might spit on your windshield and try to wipe it with his sleeve. 

Do what’s best for hockey: Ben playoff beards. 

Dallas Stars v Colorado Avalanche - Game Five

Courtesy of Getty Images

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