Hockey shave-off: Russian coach left with half a beard after victory promise (PHOTOS)
After his team’s victory over Russian rivals CSKA earlier this week secured the Gagarin Cup – the culmination of the KHL ice hockey season – Ilya Vorobyov was asked by journalists how he would celebrate the achievement.
"We have one agreement - we agreed that I would shave half [my beard] and for a while go around like that," the coach said, allhockey.ru reports.
Vorobyov proved he is a man of his word, as the pictures below show.
The coach, 41, became the youngest trainer to guide a team to the trophy when Magnitogorsk claimed a final game win against CSKA, sealing a 4-3 series victory for the club from the Urals.
It’s the team’s second Gagarin Cup triumph in the last three years.
Magnitogorsk’s general manager also made good on a promise to the team, allowing champagne to be poured over his head as part of the dressing room celebrations.
All Russian hockey in one picture. pic.twitter.com/SwrX2nBaTi— Pavel Lysenkov (@plysenkov) April 23, 2016
The so-called ‘playoff beard’ is a tradition among many hockey players, who superstitiously keep their facial hair during the playoffs in the hopes that it will bring them luck.
In Vorobyov’s case, the practice certainly seems to have paid off.