Since its playoff time for the National Hockey League (NHL), I thought I’d highlight one of the most crush-worthy players out there. This week’s choice for my crush is Vancouver Canucks center, Ryan Kesler. The 6’2″ stud was drafted in the first round by Vancouver and has played for the Canucks his entire NHL career. That fact won’t be changing anytime soon, as he recently extended his stay with the team til 2015-2016 season for a reported $30 million big ones. Yowza.

Even though he plays for Vancouver, the American born hockey player nearly crushed the hearts of millions of Canadians when he almost led the US Olympic Hockey team in upsetting the Canadian home team for the gold medal. I’m sure if that had happened, things might’ve been awkward near his Vancouver Kitsilano home. The 25-year-old lives there with his wife, Angela, and daughter, Makayla Rylan (adorable name). During the off-season, Kesler heads back to his hometown of Livonia, Michigan with his familia.

After his disheartening loss at the Olympics, Ryan received a call the next day that most athletes would die for. He was chosen as the cover athlete for Nintendo Wii’s “NHL 2K11”. Here’s what he had to say about the honor:

I was pretty disheartened after we lost in the gold medal game, and to get the call the next day and to be asked if I wanted to be on the cover, it was a nice pick-me-up. It’s always been a dream.” – Ryan Kesler

With narrowly missing a gold medal at the Olympics, hopefully he’ll do one better at the playoffs and carry the Canucks to their first ever Stanley Cup. GO CANUCKS GO.

There’s something very hot about long tousled helmet hair. Grrrrr.

He looks like Lady Gaga on ice with all those lights on his outfit. It’s very cool how EA is able to use this technology to motion capture his every move for the video game.

He looks absolutely adorable cleaned up, ready for a night on the town. If you ever need a date…

Why do some men look even hotter when they’re dads? Definite DILF material.

It’s a good thing hockey players wear helmets. You definitely want to protect a pretty face like that.

I can’t decide what’s hotter. When he smirks or when full out smiles?

The scruff, the blood… it all works. Awww, poor baby let papa take care of you.

Yummy. I think he needs help handling that junk. Definitely a handful.

There you have this week’s selection. Does Ryan melt your heart? Which NHL player would you have chosen as the candidate for this week’s crush series?