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The reason why Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith won't cut his hair

Phoenix Coyotes' goalie Mike Smith takes a break during their team practice in Glendale, Arizona May 14, 2012. The Coyotes are playing the Los Angeles Kings in Game 2 of the NHL Western Conference hockey finals on Tuesday. REUTERS/Todd Korol

Todd Korol/Reuters

Phoenix Coyotes' goaltender Mike Smith wasn't even born yet when Crosby, Stills and Nash recorded the seminal Almost Cut My Hair. If he's familiar with the Cowsills Hair ("oh say can you see my eyes, if you can, then my hair's too short"), it's only because he listens to oldies radio.

But Smith, the star of these playoffs for the Coyotes, hasn't had a haircut in almost a year and on Monday morning, inquiring minds (well my inquiring mind) wanted to know what's up.

So before Smith turned to what the Coyotes need to do to be better in Tuesday's second game of a series that L.A. leads 1-0, he talked about his unruly mop after practice at Arena.

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Smith isn't doing it because of a superstition, which was the most common theory. Instead, last summer, Smith shaved his head to help raise funds for Tampa Bay Lightning centre Vincent Lecavalier's charity foundation.

At the same time, Smith made a friendly wager with Ryan Malone, another former Lightning teammate, as to who would cut his hair first.

"So far, it's a tie," quipped Smith, whose bushy head of hair is approaching Mike Commodore levels from back in 2004, during the Calgary Flames' run to the Stanley Cup final against Tampa. In fact, the only hair that Smith has lost in these playoffs came when an errant skate clipped off a lock or two, during a scramble around the net.

"I did get a little bit of a trim there," acknowledged Smith, with a grin, "but I don't know if that counts as losing the bet or not."

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About the Author

Eric was the winner of the Hockey Hall Of Fame's Elmer Ferguson award for "distinguished contributions to hockey writing" in 2001. A graduate of the University of Western Ontario's grad school of journalism, he began covering hockey in 1978 and after spending 20 years covering the NHL and the Calgary Flames, joined The Globe in 2000. More

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