Sharks’ Scott Hannan on the power of his hair, the Kings and Joe Thornton

Sharks defenseman Scott Hannan was originally drafted in the first round by Kings’ GM Dean Lombardi when he was still at the helm in San Jose. After six-plus seasons in NoCal, the 6-foot-1 blueliner eventually signed a free agent contract with the Colorado Avalanche, before making additional stops in Washington, Calgary and Nashville.  Then, a few months ago, he returned to his old club.   Not only is he a bit older now, he has a different look too, sporting short hair – a drastic change from a decade ago, when he proudly ruled the rink with the best hair in hockey.

Following morning skate today, we spent a few minutes catching up. Here’s what he had to say about a myriad of topics, including his once flowing mane…

On if playing at Staples Center now is any different than a few years ago:

“They have a great fan base, it’s loud, comes in here and obviously being the defending champs, it’s a tough building to play in…They have a passionate fan base. Anytime you win a championship, you come in the building, it’s loud, they have a big team here that can wear you down. They’re built for playoff hockey, they proved that last year. It’s a tough building, but we’re ready for it tonight…We feel comfortable, we’ve played a lot in this building and we expect a big game tonight from both sides”

On being a different player since he cut off his hair:

“I think I’m faster now. Got a few pounds of hair off. I have to slim it down any way I can.” (MM: Was it maybe because Kris Letang was taking over the title of ‘Best Hair in Hockey’?)… “Yeah, that might have been it. [he laughed] It’s tough to grow it now too!”

On if it’s the Kings’ depth at center or the defense that makes them so tough to play against:

“I think it’s a combination of everything. If you look from the back end with Quick, they have big, strong forwards that get the puck in deep. They play a tight defensive game. They don’t give you a lot. Every game, every shift, can be a crucial part in the game. It’s shown through the last playoffs with them. They give a goal, they’re tough. They don’t give up much.”

On if he’s has noticed any change in Joe Thornton’s approach or demeanor over the years:

“He still has that causal, sometimes you can call it goofy, attitude. But, he’s serious at the same time. He showed it last game. And I think he’s showed it many times over the past.  I don’t know if it’s a bum wrap.  He comes out, you see him dominate. I’ve seen him dominate games before and come in and it’s just the way he plays. He keeps them up in their own zone. Now, as a whole team, the way we play, with four lines that just keep coming at you. I think that’s credit to the organization but it’s a great group of guys here.”

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