When Jacques Plante brought the mask into the mainstream, little did he know how far netminders would take the trend. Indeed, in 1959 when Plante first donned what would become an iconic piece of hockey history, he wasn’t wearing it to be cool, nor was he preemptively staking a claim to the countless millions made off the Friday the 13th films.
While one can argue that had Plante not pioneered the mask someone else would have eventually as the need was quite prevalent, there’s little reason to take away from Plante’s contribution to the game or his career as a whole.
A true Hockey Hall-of-Famer (inducted in 1978), Plante likely could have been considered a builder in addition to a player, helping to make the game safer for subsequent generations of elite goalies. While his mask will never win any creativity awards (nor will Patrick Roy’s or any other incredibly generic and overrated ones in case you were expecting them on this list), here are the top 13 goalie masks of Habs history he had a hand in inspiring: