The goalie mask. One of the few aspects of a uniform in hockey that can be customized to how a player wants it. And these days, the men behind the masks certainly like to go all out.
It's the creativity and design that makes these goalies recognizable, and many goaltenders have become notorious for the artwork on their helmets. It's also become common for net minders to have more than one mask, depending on whether they're home or away, or if they're wearing a third jersey.
Guys like Roberto Luongo, Cristobal Huet, and Carey Price are just a few such players. And they're not afraid to change the masks from season to season, either.
It has become quite the fashion statement these days, having a mask match the jerseys, while almost telling a story about who the goaltenders are and what the team and city means to them.
There have been some classic masks worn by some of the game's best. Guys like Curtis Joseph and Ed Belfour, who stuck with the same design no matter what team they played for, will always be known for what was on their masks.
It becomes an identity for these guys, a way for people to recognize them without ever seeing their faces.
You can tell a lot about a goalie by just looking at his mask—or it could just be that they want that little bit of swagger to go along with their game. Either way, it's time to just sit back and enjoy these fine pieces of artwork that are on display during every game we watch.
So here are the 10 best masks in the league this season.