Grit written on his face

RANDY SPORTAK -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 3:38 PM ET


 Six stitches decorate the left eye. Five more are among his eyebrow on the right.

 Both have complementary shiners.

 Plus, there are five more silk souvenirs on a swollen upper lip.

 Andrew Ference is indeed the face of playoff hockey. Old-time hockey.

 "That's right," the Flames defenceman said with a laugh.

 All that's missing is the 1960s brushcut.

 "No, no that would look silly," said Ference, who's sporting highlights in his hair. "I just need a couple of missing teeth.

 "Nah, I don't need that."

 Yeah, then he wouldn't be pretty.

 After the first two games of his team's playoff series against the Vancouver Canucks, Ference was the early winner for most scars. How they all came is insignificant at this point. After all, in the chase for the Stanley Cup, anything that doesn't kill you only makes you stronger.

 "That's part of the fun. It doesn't hurt," Ference said. "It's like a military guy when he gets a medal, something to show you've been in battle."

 At this rate, he'll look like the hacked-up character from Monty Python and the The Holy Grail.

 Ference will have the same attitude: "Nonsense, it's only a flesh wound."

 "My wife just looked at me and felt sorry for me, I guess, but she didn't see it on TV all bloody," said the never-to-be model.

 "My first question was, 'Did they do a nice closeup?' Then it was, 'If you weren't my relative, would it look cool?' She said, 'Yeah.' "

 Ference came close to a fourth set of stitches. He received the one on his lip while tied up with Matt Cooke.

 Cooke was flagged for diving while Ference received a hooking penalty -- yet he also ended up bleeding. The explanation was he'd been hit by a puck. Only problem was a nick below his bottom lip from the same altercation.

 The joke was it was a new JFK for Oliver Stone to figure out: There was a second puck for him to be hit in two places at once.

 "That's for the conspiracy theorists," he said. "I'm going with the easier route, thinking it was a puck and a stick."

 The sutures weren't all he received in Game 2. Ference also received the Green Hardhat Award as the unsung hero, which was proudly displayed in his stall yesterday.

 "I need to attach a facemask on it," he said. "My head's all right."


Videos

Photos