back to top

Vladimir Putin Is Having A Pretty Good Birthday, All Things Considered

Sure he's in the middle of launching a war in Syria, but Putin has time for the important things, like playing hockey with his bros.

Posted on

The conflict stepped up a notch with Russia launching missiles from four warships in the Caspian Sea, which then crossed over Iraq and Iran to hit targets in Syria. Putin said that the strikes “destroyed all the planned targets,” without naming them.

Russian Defense Ministry Press Service / Via AP

Russia has been criticized for not focusing its assaults on ISIS as it has claimed, but instead on any and all groups that threaten the rule of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

So all this means he had to do that which we all dread: work on his birthday. Here he is meeting with Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. You can tell Putin is lamenting the lack of cake at this confab.


But it's all good, because he got to totally cut loose later and play some hockey with his bros*. He scored seven goals on the ice, helping propel his team to a 15-10 victory.

Ria Novosti / Reuters

*Bros in this case are former and current professional hockey players in Russia's Night Ice Hockey League in Sochi, Russia.

The last time Putin played in a gala game back in May, he scored an insane eight goals to help propel his team to an 18-6 victory.

Ria Novosti / Reuters

Radio Free Europe, however, was absolutely brutal in their assessment of Putin's prowess: "Putin, who only learned to play hockey several years ago, is vastly inferior to the others who play with him, all of whom play 'easy' on Putin and allow him to shoot on goal until he scores."

And Italian brand Caviar, which has also put out a Putin-themed Apple Watch this year, released this limited-edition iPhone cover to commemorate the occasion.

In honor of his birthday today, Italian brand Caviar has released an iPhone 6 with Putin's golden head. Only $3,000.

Putin is the subject of a two-day exhibition called "Putin Universe" on display in Moscow and London, where he's been transformed into various historical characters, like Muhammad Ali and Che Guevera.

“I’m proud to present a good image of Putin," Essex-based artist Lee West said in an interview. "People seem very interested in what we’re doing. A similar exhibition was put up in Russia last year and the BBC claimed that something like this could never be done in London. Well, there you go!”

Hayes Brown is a world news editor and reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Hayes Brown at

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.