Let’s face facts, we all had moments where we weren’t that cute as kids. Whether it was bad acne or following some of the very worst trends, we underwent a time period in which looking good wasn’t a thing. Thankfully, nobody is immune to that and this includes NHL stars, which we’ll showcase in this article. We’d like to thank each and every player for taking these pictures, as they’re regarded as absolute gold. Without a doubt, they’ve grown substantially since these photos.
The photos include a variety of shots, whether it be a certain player in their junior days, a player rocking a disturbing outfit at a young age or even two players together rocking the blonde frosted tips. Scroll down to number 7 to find out who those two players are. Hint; they played junior hockey with Val d’Or? Another hint, they’re both small in stature, but play one hell of a hardnosed game.
So without further ado, let’s stop speculating and get to these hilarious pictures. Here are 15 pictures these NHL stars don’t want us to see of when they were young. Be sure to share the link with a buddy and like always, let us know your thoughts on these pictures via our Facebook page!
15. Gangster Tyler
We tend to forget, but as youngsters we all went through a phase where we struggled to find an identity. We’d try different things until we finally matured and realized bandanas were not something appropriate to mass on Sunday. For Tyler Seguin, his uncertainty phase took place around the time of this photo, as he dressed up as a gangster while rocking the blonde frosted tips. It was a weird time for Tyler.
Can you imagine if Seguin was drafted to the Edmonton Oilers instead of Taylor Hall? Just thinking of Seguin, McDavid and Draisaitl together is insane. Instead, the Bruins took the forward second and ultimately things didn’t work out there, in large part, due to off-ice issues. Tyler is now making a living in Dallas. The team is nowhere near being a contender, but he continues to rack up the points, scoring 70 points in 81 games.
14. Ovie In Sabres Gear
The Buffalo Sabres wish this was foreshadowing, but much to their dismay, The Great Eight would end up joining the Washington Capitals and leading the franchise back to greatness. They’ve yet to win a cup with Ovie, but statically speaking, they’re a threat every single year and the 2016-’17 campaign is no exception.
Unlike others, Ovechkin actually started to play quite late, signing up to hockey at the age of eight (you can’t make this stuff up). Ovie showed tremendous promise early on, but unfortunately, his future career was put on hold as his parents were unable to drive him to hockey school. Thankfully, his coach saw his raw talent and insisted he pursue the sport. I think we can safely say that coach had a good eye and, a decade later, Ovie would be rocking his talent in North American rinks, becoming a must see player every single night. Alex put up a ridiculous 52 goal campaign in his rookie year and has continued climbing from there.
13. Beardless Hank
Detroit’s Swedish amateur scout Hakan Andersson has found some serious gems for the team in the last couple of years. With Fedorov leaving the Motor City and Yzerman retiring, the organization desperately looked for the next in line, enter the under six foot forward who was a seventh round pick.
Scouts overlooked Zetterberg for his size as you see in this picture. Z was short in stature and looked quite juvenile in terms of his build. What scouts failed to see however was the fact that he was ultra smart on the ice and relentless with and without the puck. He shined in his rookie year putting up 22 goals and he would fully blossom in his third year netting 85 points in the regular season along with scoring six goals in the Wings six playoff games that year. As they say, the rest is history.
12. Carey “The Cowboy” Price
Aside from being a tremendous puckstopper for the Habs, Carey Price grew up in an aboriginal community and he continues to celebrate his roots nowadays, encouraging the youth to be proud of where they hail from.
The picture above shows a young looking Price riding on top of a horse. Carey’s all about that way of life and, not surprisingly, he probably has a couple of country music tunes on his iPod. He’s grown leaps and bounds since this youthful picture was taken, as the goaltender is now a proud father as he nears his 30s. Carey looks more mature than ever before, but don’t be fooled by his older age. Like a fine wine, Carey Price only seems to be getting better. We wouldn’t expect anything less from Carey “The Cowboy” Price.
11. The Arizona Kid
Who could have predicted that an Arizona kid would reinvigorate one of the most popular hockey markets in the world? Born in San Ramon, California, Auston Matthews grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona, falling in love with the fastest game on ice. By the age of two, he was already attending Coyotes’ games, cheering on the likes of Shane Doan and Daniel Briere. By the age of five, he enrolled into hockey full time and he simply never looked back.
Born in 1997, the 19 year old is enjoying one hell of a year. Netting 39 goals in 80 games, it seems like Auston might be a lock for the Calder this year and some would even argue he deserves some MVP consideration (even though it’s a long shot).
10. Babyfaced Connor
From his days with the Erie Otters, it was evident that this kid was the real deal. Although he looked like a 13 year old that couldn’t even lift a five pound dumbbell on a good day, the kid had once in a lifetime skill. He cemented his legacy during his final OHL season, scoring 120 points in 47 games. Oh, and don’t forget his playoff performance, scoring 49 points in 20 games.
His NHL rookie year didn’t do his skill justice, as it was shortened due to injury. This year, however, we’ve seen his brilliance first hand, as not only does he lead the league in points but, more importantly, he’s leading the Oilers back into the post-season after a staggering decade long drought. Looking at his campaign, he’ll definitely be a Hart Trophy contender.
9. Kane Rocking The Sabre Jersey
Speaking of MVPs, we now turn our attention to last year’s winner, Patrick Kane. Growing up in Buffalo, Kane was a fan of the local team. Unfortunately for Sabres fans, they’d end up with another Kane and that’s Evander. We’re not knocking his skill, but he’s no Patrick Kane, that’s for damn sure.
In 2007, Kane would make his country proud, getting selected first overall despite being smaller in stature. His size certainly didn’t matter and he justified the pick by becoming the first American born player to ever win both the Art Ross and Hart Trophies. Along with those prestigious accomplishments, he’s a three time cup winner looking to add to that this season. Patrick Kane might be considered the greatest American born player of all-time once his career comes to an end.
8. Clean Cut Brent
Drafted 20th overall, the Wild had high hopes for Brent Burns. He was decent there, but ultimately things just didn’t work out and a change of scenery would change his life. Today, Burns not only looks nothing like the picture above, but he’s performing at a exceptional rate and many think he should be in contention for the Hart Trophy.
Rocking an epic beard, Burns took his game to new heights this season, collecting a career high 29 goals. To put things into perspective, that’s more goals than five different team’s entire d-core. Yup, it’s just been that kind of year for Burnzie, who’s on another level. For Wild fans, they can only look at this picture in utter shock, as the d-man has changed his entire career around following his Wild exit. Can you imagine Suter and Burns manning a blueline?
7. The Blonde Brothers: Letang & Marchand
If you’ve played competitive hockey at some point in your lifetime, you’re probably well aware that younger teams have some wacky traditions, particularly in the playoffs. For some younger players, growing a beard is out of the question, so the next best thing is getting a wacky haircut. In the case of Kris Letang and Brad Marchand during their Val d’Or days, it meant getting those old school blonde frosted tips. Don’t lie, if you were a 90s kid, you probably asked you parents to get the same haircut.
On the ice, the two were putting up comparable numbers to nowadays. Kris had more than a point per game in his final two seasons, while Brad had a season of 80 points in 57 games. What’s even more mind blowing is the fact that he collected all those points while piling up 108 PIMs.
6. Young Man Erik
It really turns your stomach knowing 14 other teams passed on this gem. It hurts even more when one of those clubs was your favorite team. Here’s a couple of names that went before Erik Karlsson; Bogosian, Schenn, Filatov, Wilson, Boedker, Bailey, Hodgson, Beach, Myers, Teubert and Boychuk… out of that list, less than half are still in the league. Wow.
Visually, Karlsson has changed quite a bit from this photo, as he’s filled out a lot more, grown his hair and he’s now littered with tattoos that make him look much older than this throwback picture. On the ice, Karlsson continues to thrive, putting up another 70+ point campaign. The scary part of this is the fact that he’s still only 26.
5. Happy Gino
Looking at the modern day crop of NHL stars, Evgeni Malkin might go down as the most underrated of the bunch. Due to Sidney Crosby’s success, Malkin has taken a backseat, but those that are aware, know of his contributions.
He sustained an injury that slowed down his progress, but Malkin was on pace to put up staggering numbers before his injury this season. The power-forward has 72 points in 62 games, which is his best offensive season since 2011-2012. Since his injury, the Pens have struggled to sustain momentum, but once he returns, the club will be back on track and destined for another lengthy Cup run.
We pay homage to his career with this throwback picture of Gino rocking a Bruins hat and eating some ice cream. Malkin started to play at the age of five and 25 years later, he’s still going strong and showing minimal signs of slowing down.
4. Flower Power
Missing a couple of teeth and rocking the Harry Potter glasses, you wouldn’t assume this kid is now an NHL star. Marc-Andre Fleury had a brilliant junior career, so much so that he was a rare modern day netminder to be drafted first overall. Desperately looking for a goalie, the Pens jumped on the chance to select Fleury and he’d provide the team with great stability for many years.
He’s now 32 and, all of a sudden, Marc-Andre has become the old man in Steel Town. 22 year old Matt Murray is now the face between the pipes, leading many to believe that Fleury can be out the door next season, whether it be via trade at the draft or getting picked up by the expansion Las Vegas franchise. All and all, his chances of staying with the Pens seem rather slim.
3. Subban & Stamkos
There are two future NHL superstars in this picture. Who could have predicted that the two would turn into franchise players for struggling hockey markets? Judging by their talents, PK and Steven could have probably called it. Subban played his junior hockey with the Belleville Bulls. He showed his offensive prowess at a young age, putting up 76 points in 56 games during his final campaign with the team.
As for Mr. Stamkos, he wasn’t too shabby either, being projected as “the one” for his 2008 draft year. The sniper was scoring at a ridiculous clip, netting almost a goal per game for the Sarnia Sting in his final season. He followed that up with a playoff run of 11 goals in nine games, as it was evident he was going to be something special.
2. Crosby’s Graduation Picture
By the age of two, Sidney Crosby was already taking shots with his stick and by three, he was on the ice skating. At that point, most of us were still living the easy life, but not Sidney, who fell in love with the game.
In the picture you see above, Crosby looks more like a young Will Ferrell than a hockey God. The picture was taken from Sidney’s graduation year, when he posed for the picture at his former high school, Harrison Trimble High School, located in Moncton, New Brunswick. After graduation, Sidney would continue his torrid pace, electrifying the QMJHL with 168 points in 62 games. All he did in his first NHL season was crack the 100 point total, putting up a total of 102 points. Greatness ran through those veins a long time ago.
1. Triple J: Jean Jumper Jagr
It’s kind of insane that a player born in the early 70s is still in the league today and this picture shows us just how old Jagr is, as he rocks a jean jumpsuit while showing his patriotism with the American eagle t-shirt.
For Jags, hockey has been in his DNA for quite some time. He started skating at the age of three and it was evident early on that he was going to be something special. By 15, he was playing elite level hockey back home in his native land and, by 17, he was already on the Czech national team, becoming the youngest member of the squad.
Getting drafted fifth overall, Jaromir immediately impressed, notching 57 points in his rookie year. That was way back in 1990, if you can believe, and 27 years later, the mullet man continues going strong in the league. He’s even still rocking a mullet, although he’s considering removing it. Either way, he’s a legend.
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