Moustache Mania: Islanders tackle Movember

Pascal Aquin sports a moustache during Movember 2016. Credit: Charlottetown Islanders Facebook

“I gotta go with Pascal.”

Charlottetown Islanders forward Matthew Grouchy didn’t hesitate when asked who’s grown the best moustache on the team this November. He quickly pointed to his linemate, 20-year-old Pascal Aquin.

“Kinger (forward Sam King), he’s getting up there, but his is mostly beard.” said Grouchy. “But Pascal’s got that French look and the little goatee so the moustache works for him.”

The reason for the excessive amount of lip rugs is Movember. It’s become an annual tradition for men across Canada; grow a moustache throughout the month of November in support of men’s health initiatives. In 2016 alone, Canadians raised $15.6 million for research on testicular cancer, prostate cancer, and mental health and suicide prevention.

Grouchy’s ringing endorsement of Aquin was echo’d by each his teammates. Of the seven Islanders asked, each and every one of them proclaimed that Aquin had the best moustache on the team.

The overager from Le Gardeur, QC gladly accepts his title. For him, facial hair has been commonplace for a while.

“I don’t know what to say,” said Aquin with a smile. “Even when I was in peewee I had a sick moustache.”

For a team consisting of hockey players primarily aged 17-19, growing a moustache can be tough. As such, a lot of the guys on the team struggle to grow more than a few barely-visible strands. When asked about who had the worst moustache on the team, the answers varied.

“(Sullivan) Sparkes has no moustache at all” said forward Nikita Alexandrov.

“I have to say Cayse Ton.” said defenceman Hunter Drew.

“I’d probably say Grouch and Hunter” said forward Sam King.

Grouchy, to his credit, agrees.

“Yeah I would probably have to say me.”

One name, however, got brought up on more than one occasion.

“P.O. can’t grow a moustache, that’s for sure.” said Grouchy

“P.O.” Aquin said without hesitation. “P.O’s trying but he’s got nothing.”

Defenceman Pierre-Olivier Joseph might play a strong game on the ice, but his facial hair game appears to be coming up short. When asked about his crumb catcher, the Islanders captain laughed and said he’s trying his best.

“It’s not the best one. I’m trying though!” exclaimed the Islanders captain.

Another name brought up more than once was Hunter Drew. The 6’1 defenceman with the heavy shot has a thick caterpillar hugging his upper lip, but some were quick to point his way when asked who had the worst Mo on the team.

“Hunter Drew for sure.” Joseph said. “100% sure.”

Drew’s moustache, while one of the more prominent on the team, makes him look less like Parks and Recreation character Ron Swanson, but more like Lt. Jim Dangle from Reno 911!

Sam King even suggested that there might have been a little bit of cheating on Drew’s part.

“Hunter definitely started growing his a little early.” Said King with a laugh. “He’s dying it for sure, too”

The use of Just For Men is a hot-button issue in the Movember community. Most consider it cheating, but many men still use it to transform that peach fuzz in to a thick brown colour.

On the Islanders, there were two names that commonly came up with regards to the facial hair product.

“I think Sam King is definitely a Just For Men guy.” said Hunter Drew of the man who accused him of doing the same thing.

“Kinger for sure has thrown Just For Men in there once or twice.” said Grouchy of his teammate.

“I don’t think anyone is… But maybe (Cayse) Ton would.” said Alexandrov

“I guess the young guys would definitely have to. I’m think specifically about Cayse Ton though.” said Joseph.

At the end of the day though, the Islanders captain was quick to point out the real reason for the Mo season.

“We just want to be there for the cause. It’s a fun way to support men’s health.”