Ladies, I get it. I grew up next door to PGA Tour headquarters, so my idea of an attractive athlete was always a carefully tucked shirt and close-cropped locks. In golf, anything above a whispered curse is a scandal, and a thrown club is a slight to the sport.
Hockey is basically the opposite: facial hair and gear fly all over the place, as do fists and salty language.
Of course I love my dapper golf boys, but there is just something about a walk on the wild side with hockey. You’ll see.
There is a lot of potential with hockey players. A few actors even laced up the skates before hitting the big screen – Taylor Kitsch of Friday Night Lights fame might have been in the NHL today if he hadn’t been injured. Cuba Gooding Jr., Keanu Reeves, Kiefer Sutherland all were known to shoot the puck around. I wish I was kidding, but even Paris Hilton played in high school.
Just as a disclaimer, every female sports fan knows that there’s a big difference between being a puck bunny (or whatever – there’s a version of this girl in every pro sport) and appreciating the combo of personality, playing quality and the overall swoon factor of players.
*In a goaltender’s stance, he has five open areas to protect from the puck. The “five hole” is between the goalie’s legs. Charming analogy. But points for hockey knowledge, I guess?
The great thing about hockey is because it’s a less visible sport in the U.S., there’s a level of access to NHL players that doesn’t really exist in the NFL or NBA. Players are willing to do just about anything to promote the game.
Franchise marketing is heavily player-involved so you can really get to know (i.e., stalk) your favorites. Hockey men have a small-town vibe and seem to just be having a great time playing the sport they love.
Also, there has never been a reality show surrounding the lives of their girlfriends and wives so that is basically as down-to-earth as it gets in professional sports. (Of course if there WAS such a show, I would probably watch it.)
Currently, the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks heading into the Stanley Cup Playoffs, having beaten the Pittsburgh Penguins and last year’s champs the L.A. Kings in the previous series.
Even the players seem to be surprised when the puck goes in, which makes hockey a difficult sport to to get into. So’s a field guide to the hottest men behind the plexiglass to help you through the Stanley Cup Finals.
Let’s just hope these guys don’t melt the ice. Here are the Hot Hockey Players playing in the Hockey Playoffs
1. Johnny Boychuk
Johnny Boychuk was photographed at left looking very dapper for a feature in The Improper Bostonian. Just shy of 30 years old, Johnny’s boyish smile hides the fact that he is an intense defender who has made multiple runs at the Stanley Cup, and probably won’t be losing steam this go-around.
The real question is, is there a defense for those piercing blue eyes? Doubtful.
2. Tyler Seguin
Seguin and Patrick Kane (below, with the Blackhawks) are good friends from playing together in Switzerland during the lockout at the beginning of this season. Should be interesting to see how old friendships shake out when the Stanley Cup on the line. That sounds like a movie I’d totally watch.
Warning: don’t expect breakfast the next day.
3. Gregory Campbell
In the Bruins’ last game against the Penguins, Gregory broke his right leg blocking a shot by Evgeni Malkin and stayed on the ice for over a minute playing until his team was back up to full strength. Then he skated off unassisted.
He sacrificed himself for his best buds:
You won’t see him for the rest of the playoffs while he recovers, but he makes the list for sheer grit. Also, you know, the obvious reason.
Wait, I can’t just leave it like that. I have to say it: he’s smokin’ hot. That is the other reason why he makes the list.
1. Jonathan Toews
I know, Jonathan. It is literally a joke how hot you are. That ref is just jealous.
Even though he is only 25, Jonathan is the captain and leader of the Blackhawks this season. The kind of man other men rally behind, a trait that is always sexy as hell.
At first glance, he looks a little American Psycho -ish.
2. Patrick Kane
Patrick Kane is undoubtedly one of the key players for the Blackhawks – he stepped up big time during double overtime in their last game against the Kings to score the winning goal, propelling his team into the finals.
He also kind of has a boyish, Hayden Christensen thing going on, yes?
At 24 years old, he is definitely part of the reason the Blackhawks are advancing to the Finals for the second time in four years. A quick and inventive right winger, Kane scored the Stanley Cup winning goal (also in overtime) in 2010.
He also likes to dance. He basically only has one move, but works it.
A great example of the access the NHL allows is their NHL 36 series, where they shadow a player for 36 hours surrounding a game. The beginning of Patrick Kane’s is my favorite, where he tries to keep a stoic game face on for the cameras, and just can’t quite pull it off.
Disclaimer: I cannot even show you the hair he is working right now for the playoffs. It’s like this hideous mullet-thing with racing stripes on his temples. Total Frat Move wrote about it, if that gives you any hint at all about how heinous it is.
3. Patrick Sharp
Patrick Sharp, DAMN. Let me do that again: da-aaaamn. Patrick earns that two syllable damn by absolutely and totally debunking the grotty hockey player stereotype. If James Bond had to play hockey for a mission, he would take pointers from Patrick Sharp.
Even his teammates agree he is the hottest in the locker room, and he has a lot of things going for him besides just his looks.
He knows how to whip his hair back and forth:
He is also a great sport:
Three words: Pulling. It. Off.
Bottom line with all of these men: rawr.
Maybe once Lord Stanley is handed out (and playoff beards are shaved) hockey’s finest will start competing for your love instead?
By the way – do you know what most hockey players do in the off-season? Golf. Turns out they clean up pretty well after all.
Have you been watching Hockey this season for the eye candy the wonderful sport that it is?