Sunday, February 21, 2010

Hey Goalie, Ya Got Some Nerd On You.

(Jean Sebastian-Giguere of the Anaheim Mighty Ducks wearing what appears to be a Terminator Duck)

A goalie's mask is probably the most personal piece of equipment in all of sports. It does, in fact, save their face from a blistering rubber disc going 90-100 mph; but it also allows them to express their individuality. Hand painted masks that display where they come from, nicknames they might have, and their interests. Some of these goalies share a common interest with those of us who enjoy the "nerdier" side of life.

I was going through a list of goalie masks in the NHL when I came across a Spider Man painted mask. That got me thinking, how many goalies have there been with superheroes displayed on their head. Well, it turns out science fiction and video games were pretty popular too.

So, I've compliled a list of the best "nerdy" goalie masks that I could find:

Spider Man


Marvel Heroes

(Yeah, who knew Marvel was gonna corner this market huh?)
Iron Man and Captain America

The Incredible Hulk


Thor and Silver Surfer

Batman and Villains

Star Wars


Peter Budaj (Colorado Avalanche) and Kari Lehtonen (Atlanta Thrashers)
I had to give these two goalies their own section because both of them had multiple nerdy masks.

Budaj has some really sweet masks. Yes, that's Altair from Assasin's Creed in the top two pictures. The Red Hulk on the bottom two - and a jacked Ned Flanders on the back of it.
Kari Lehtonen Starts off with an homage to Kill Bill with Beatrix Kiddo and O-Ren Ishii

Then he has a quite obscure mask featuring the girls from Final Fantasy x - Yuna and Rikku

Then to finish it off we see Lehtonen in an Optimus Prime mask.

Chris Mason also has a couple of cool designs, Kratos from God of War and Leonidas from 300

Even though the masks they use now are definitely safer, they lack a certain amount of intimidation that goalies in the past were able to execute.

Yeah, nobody wants to get on a breakaway and have to stare down a skull-man or vicious wildcat.

Check out and Griffe for more great designs. The goalie mask is such a unique piece of equipment it's fascinating how many designs there are out there.


George said...

Wow! I love these mask!

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