Even if you don’t know hockey, you know what hockey hair is!
Also known as having great “flow,” an amazing head of lettuce in hockey transcends the game and is the most common reason NHL players get recognized in public.
Aside from their battered faces, toothless smiles, and hockey asses of course!
But there are some players (even a player turned coach and media personality) that paved the way and set the tone for what hockey hair is today.
Some might call them trendsetters.
Without further ado, here the top 10 hockey hair of all time:
Although “unconventional” by hockey hair standards, Karlsson sports an impressive mane and he kicks off our list. It took some time but over the years the d-mans stats kept growing and so did the hair. Almost in lockstep with current teammate Joe Thornton’s facial hair.
Karlson gets extra points for being at his hair peak right now as we speak. Currently on the San Jose Sharks and still playing some great hockey. When he is at full speed, carrying the puck up the ice and the hair is flowing, it’s a glorious sight.
And in an age where most players hair is covered by their helmet, Karlson carries on the legacy of great hockey hair that came before him. We salute you Erik, keep fighting the good fight.
Bobby Clarke’s hair was as wild as he was. Sure it’s not a mullet, but who’s going to tell him he’s off the list? Not me. Even at his age. Maybe if he played in an age where helmets were mandatory it would be a different story. The truth is that mop of wavy curls was loose any time you watched a Flyers game in the 70’s and 80’s.
At times it looks the same shade as his orange away jersey. Does the no teeth help complete the “hockey player” look? Absolutely! This is hockey hair as far as I’m concerned, even if it falls short of being a mullet.
From one toothless hockey player to the next. And No, that’s not Crispin Glover in a wig. Mike Ricci played 17 seasons in the NHL and was often the easiest player to pick out on the ice due to his robust ‘do.
His work ethic and play style earned him praise and niche fandom at his few stops in the show. The hair played it’s part in that. Ricci was a guy you loved to have on your team and hated him if he was an opponent. The hair played it’s part in that too. Never change Mike.
The second long-time Flyer with a mane of red/orange hair on the list. Where Clarke’s hair would classify as more wavy than curly, Hartnells is curely. And there’s a lot of it.
It was a staple in the Philly warm-up scene for years and before that in Nashville. Sadly, it didn’t stick around for his entire career. He might of climbed a few spots if it did. During its heyday though, he was an intimating sight on the ice. It also might have had something to do with his over 1800 career PIM. Still looking into that though.
The man that would be known as “Wayne Gretzky’s Bodyguard” sported an all-time great mullet during his 19 seasons in the NHL. What was great about McSorley’s was the evolution during his career.
Starting nice and tight his rookie year and peaking in all it’s glorious mulletness while in LA, he sported it in some form his entire career. For that, you get extra props.
Although the disgusting way he ended his career in 2000 evens that out.
As few of the guys that wanted to test him physically on the ice, fewer can test him in the hair department. The mullet was epic.
You don’t get a nickname like “The Blonde Demon” with a crew cut. Many would call LaFleur one of the pioneers of the mullet as we know it today. He’s also the all-time leading scorer of one of the most storied franchises in NHL history, the Montreal Canadians.
He had a 17-year NHL career. 14 of those in Montreal. He gets a boost for refusing to wear a helmet as they became mandatory in the 80’s. When asked for a comment he simply pointed to his hair. Ok. Maybe that’s just the picture I have in my head.
I bet the name conjures up all kinds of memories. One thing though has to come to the front. Ziggy Palffy might have had the best mullet of all-time. That is not a hyperbole. Look at that beauty!
Now what you’re asking yourself is, why isn’t he higher on the list then? Well he got docked points for abandoning the mullet at during his career.
He did everything he could to emulate his idol and fellow countryman early in his career (He might just pop up later). But for a time, Palffy took the hockey world by storm with a mullet to top all mullets.
He also had a nice 12-year career split between the Islanders, Kings and Penguins.
For decades Barry Melrose and his mullet have been synonymous. Through his 6-year playing career, 4-year coaching career and then more recently into the broadcast booth, the mullet has held strong.
Today the grey is slowly taking over the brown, but the hair care has never been stronger. He’s this high for a few reasons. Commitment and longevity are chief among them. And like Karlson at #10, it’s still being maintained and is in peak condition. Barry you give us strength in this unstable time.
It there a more iconic look of mystifying hockey hair than Al Iafrate at the ’93 All-Star game? I mean look at that thing! And that’s all-natural baby! He looked like a mob hit man in an 80’s movie. It was truly a sight to behold. Forget the fact that he’d win the hardest shot that year by hitting 105.2 MPH.
The commitment is what stands out the most to me. That ‘do didn’t happen overnight! That took some time.
Besides having a bomb before ultra-light carbon fiber one-pieces, he played 799 games in the NHL and was selected to 4 All-Star games. The look though, might be one thing that people remember the most.
And here we are at the granddaddy of them all, Jaromir Jagr. His mullet is simply legendary. One of the most well-maintained heads of hair to ever come through the NHL. It was miraculous.
When he came into the NHL, he was an instant star playing alongside guys like Lemieux and Francis. He both looked and acted the part. And soon he was a bit of a cultural phenomenon. Especially around Pittsburgh. He drove sports cars, went out to bars, and the ladies loved him.
He would win two Stanley Cups and an MVP. Believe it or not, the man’s still playing pro hockey overseas. And in case you’re wondering, yes, the mullet lives on to this day. Jagr and his hair, exemplify everything that is Hockey Hair.