It’s as much a part of hockey as sticks, pucks, and goalie pads. We marvel at Florida Panthers forward Jaromir Jagr’s business-in-the-front-party-in the back mullet, a style so timeless, so awesome, so hockey, that Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban paid homage to it at the NHL All-Star Weekend in January.
New York Rangers forward Ron Duguay was all about Sassoon jeans, Studio 54, and curly locks in the disco days of the 1970s. And those of us of a certain age can recall catcalling St. Louis Blues sniper Garry Unger as his long red mane flew when he skated up ice in the early 1970s.
Hair is so synonymous with hockey that there’s a term for it: Flow. Hockey players are perfectionists, dedicating countless hours making sure that a move, a shot, a save is just right. They’re apparently just as fussy about their flow.
So much so that an enterprising anonymous filmmaker has been producing High School All Hockey Hair Team videos since 2011.
The 2015 YouTube video went viral with more than 2.5 million views. And this year’s
edition is quickly racking up the clicks and views. Flow is such a serious business that
hockey equipment manufacturer Warrior sponsored the video in 2015, giving the filmmaker $15,000 if the video surpassed 100,000 views.
There aren’t many players of color in this year’s video, but that doesn’t mean minority
hockey players haven’t let it flow.
Mike Marson became the NHL’s second black player when he joined the Washington Capitals in 1974. But he was the first to sport a killer Afro, mutton chops, and a Fu Manchu.
And who could forget goalie Eldon “Pokey” Reddick?
He appeared to be as active with the hair activator as he was in net for the Winnipeg Jets, Edmonton Oilers and Florida Panthers in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
High-scoring forward Anson Carter and enforcer Georges Laraque packed dreadlocks under their helmets during their NHL careers. Hockey tough guy Chris Simon wore his dark hair at Rapunzel-length during most of his NHL career to show Ojibwa First Nation pride.
Like their teammates, they just went with the flow.