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POSTED ON Thursday, 11.14.2013 / 3:08 PM ET
By Andrea Nelson - Editorial Assistant | DetroitRedWings.com / The Wheel Deal

Like most players, Darren Helm has sported a playoff beard, like this one from the 2012 playoffs. But rarely does he grow just a moustache like he is this month. (Photo by Getty Images)

DETROIT – Watch out, Henrik Zetterberg, your mustache has a little competition this month.

Mustaches are sprouting throughout the Red Wings’ locker room in honor of Movember, an effort to raise awareness for prostate and testicular cancer and mental health challenges.

“I think it’s always important to bring awareness to anything of this magnitude,” forward Darren Helm said. “I mean we do the breast cancer thing, the cancer thing and it’s all very important for people to remember. It’s just a small thing we do to help and it’s just a fun thing to do.”

The players are having plenty of fun with the effort. The mustaches are growing at different speeds and angles, but two weeks into Movember there is already a clear frontrunner.

“This guy’s winning,” Jimmy Howard laughed, pointing to Jonas Gustavsson on the stool next to him.

“Just kind of the biggest one is looking at Gustavsson, he looks I’m not sure how to say it, but not like himself,” defenseman Brendan Smith said. “Normally he looks like he could be in Persia with that mustache.”

“In this room? Gustav’s a pretty nice one,” Helm said “A lot of guys that are younger this year, the younger guys, don’t really grow as much, it’s the amateur mustache race this year.”

Amateur or veteran aside, Gustavsson is clearly winning the ‘stache race.

“Well I don’t know if I’m winning, I kind of cheated,” Gustavsson said. “I didn’t shave it all off and went from zero to this so I kind of had a couple weeks advantage, at least.

“It’s obviously for a good cause. Normally I don’t look like this so it’s fun for a few weeks, to do something different.”

The Red Wings are taking part in the month-long effort to raise awareness for men’s health, a worldwide issue that hits close to home for everyone in the team’s dressing room.

“Everyone in here knows somebody who has been affected one way or another so it’s just a little thing that goes a long way and plus it’s fun to grow a mustache,” Howard said.

It’s a fun effort, but the players know it’s for a serious cause. Howard, Smith and Helm officially teamed up to take their Movember effort one step further, allowing fans to donate money and support men’s health, and their mustaches, online at DetroitRedWings.com/Movember.

“We want to draw a little attention to it,” Smith said. “It’s funny when you see people in the stands wearing fake mustaches and stuff so it’s obviously bringing the fans into it so it’s a good idea.”

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 52 39 9 4 171 117 82
2 FLA 54 32 16 6 150 122 70
3 NYR 53 30 18 5 150 135 65
4 NYI 52 28 18 6 145 129 62
5 TBL 53 29 20 4 140 127 62
6 DET 53 27 18 8 133 131 62
7 BOS 53 28 19 6 153 146 62
8 PIT 52 27 18 7 138 132 61
9 NJD 55 27 21 7 122 123 61
10 MTL 55 27 24 4 147 145 58
11 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
12 OTT 54 25 23 6 153 166 56
13 PHI 52 23 20 9 122 137 55
14 BUF 54 21 27 6 124 146 48
15 CBJ 55 21 28 6 137 170 48
16 TOR 52 19 24 9 120 144 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
D. Larkin 52 18 20 26 38
H. Zetterberg 53 9 27 3 36
T. Tatar 52 16 17 -1 33
G. Nyquist 53 14 15 -2 29
P. Datsyuk 38 8 20 12 28
J. Abdelkader 53 14 13 -3 27
M. Green 46 4 17 -7 21
N. Kronwall 45 3 14 -10 17
B. Richards 39 5 11 7 16
D. DeKeyser 49 6 8 12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 20 10 4 .933 1.97
J. Howard 7 8 4 .904 2.89