David Backes (left) and Joe Thornton (Photo by Scott Rovak/NHLI via Getty Images)
Sharks cornerstone Joe Thornton has grown one of the most impressive beards in playoff history, but that earned him no respect in Game 1 when he got into it with Blues captain David Backes.
It's impossible not to make a pun here, so let's get it out of the way early: things got hairy at the end of the first period last night in St. Louis' 2-1 win over San Jose. Two of the most imposing players in the series, San Jose's Joe Thornton and Blues captain David Backes got into a beard-pulling fight. It was awesome:
Clearly Backes is the beard aggressor here and Thornton's majestic growth gave the St. Louis center much more to grab on to. Thornton tries to reply in kind, but grabs more chin than anything. Still, this is the best beard-pull fight I've seen since the Bugs Bunny hillbilly square dance.
Backes didn't shy away from the incident, joking about it at the post-game press conference:
"Just seeing whose was real and making sure they were glued on right," he said. "Seemed like both checked out and we moved on with life."
Game 1 was fun even without the beard antics thanks to a couple of teams with balance, physicality and a clear passion to win it all for the first time. No truth to the rumor that Brent Burns plans to tie up his beard as a precautionary measure for Game 2 however…