There are a few current masks that satisfy this writer’s thirst for Heroes and Heels. Nikolai Khabibulin, Stanley Cup champion with the 2004 Lightning, was dubbed "The Bulin Wall" and understandably had a brick wall painted on his lid. Jonas Hiller of the Anaheim Ducks also has a Darth Vader thing going on and while one Ducks TV commentator this year called it the worst mask in the league, I can appreciate the bold simplicity. Still, not much in the way of reflecting or creating an identity. It’s James Reimer of the Toronto Maple Leafs who leads the way in both literally assuming a super hero/alter ego and gesturing to his fans. Reimer’s "Optimus Reim", a nod to the telelvision cartoon Transformers, is ideal. It plays on his name, popular culture, and speaks to his performance as a (so far, temporary) saviour for the team. Says Reimer: ""It’s a fun thing to do with the fans. If that’s what they know you by…" (theglobeandmail.com) and adds to that ""I have all of these things on my helmet for a reason" (ingoalmag.com).
Read on for more talk about style in a mask. More links after the jump.
LNO continues covering the up-and-comers with the 2011 3rd rounder.
For Mike at VLM, it's Carl Gunnarsson.
That's like breaking up with a girl to date her sister. Awkward.
The story of the originator of the 'Michigan Lacrosse Goal'.
Why LA doesn't just use this glorious jersey for every home game is beyond me.