No hiding during playoffs

SCOTT FISHER -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 1:17 PM ET


 Chicks dig scars. At least that's how the saying goes.

 And if that's the case, there's a growing number of players in both the Calgary Flames and Vancouver Canucks dressing rooms who should be elevated to rock-star status.

 "I don't try to pull off the rock-star status," said Flames defenceman Andrew Ference, who nonetheless resembles goth singer Marilyn Manson with his blackened eyes.

 And he's not so sure his wife Krista, a competitive snowboarder, has taken a liking to his battle-scarred mug.

 "As far as finding me more attractive, I don't know if that's the case," Ference grinned.

 "But she gets a good laugh at my expense. I think it's just more comical for her."

 With his two shiners and a top lip full of stitches, Ference is receiving sideways glances from more people than just his spouse. Springtime in Canada means playoffs. And playoff hockey means shiners, stitches and goose eggs.

 Professional hockey players are pretty easy to spot this time of the year.

 "It's tough to hide. I had to go out to Wal-Mart yesterday to get a few things for the house," Ference said.

 "People are looking at me and saying, 'Are you some kind of thug?' or they'll say, 'Good game last night.'

 "I usually fly under the radar around Calgary but now it's kind of tough."

 As beat up as Ference's face is, he's not even sure if this is the worst he's endured at one time.

 "I've had so many cuts, I can't remember which ones were bad and which ones weren't.

 "I'm at the perfect height for guys' elbows and sticks coming up. I'm at the perfect elevation so I tend to get a few more than most guys."

 Still, things could be worse.

 At least he can eat dinner without running it through a blender. For teammate Craig Conroy, who took a Johan Hedberg stick in the chops in Game 4, meals are a challenge.

 "The worst ones are on the mouth," Ference said. "Especially during playoffs because you want to eat so much food to keep your energy up.

 "So I feel sorry for Connie with that mouth injury. I couldn't imagine having that.

 "I feel lucky just having (cuts around) the eyes. It's all cosmetic. It doesn't hurt other than when you're sleeping and you roll over. (Then) it hurts but other than that, it just looks funny."


Photos