With the NHL off-season still far from being over, and all the fans getting impatient, I thought I would write a fun article to give everyone something to read. I have decided to countdown the NHL's Top Ten greatest goalie masks in its history. So lets get right to it!
10. Ilya Bryzgalov (Anaheim Ducks)
Number ten was a really tough choice for me, as it was the last mask I had to pick from my list of many. I decided to go with Ilya's because it was a great mask with a prefect theme. It included the great beaches of California, cartoon Character Daffy Duck and pretty much just looked cool!
9. Andrew Raycroft (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Raycroft actually made a top ten list for something positive! His helmet in Toronto was a very interesting one, I must say. Every time the camera man would go to it and then leave it, you would be like, "No who cares about the game, I want to see the rest of his helmet!". Raycrofts helmet was like a trip through the Leafs history, as it sported the old Maple Leaf Gardens and many Leaf greats.
8. Jose Theodore (Heritage Classic Outdoor Game-Montreal)
Theodore had two masks that I had to choose from. Either this outdoor classic toque on his helmet, or his stylish one he wore in Colorado. But I had to go with this one as it will always be remembered at the first outdoor NHL game of all time. He put the toque on over his helmet for his mom who had always told him to wear a toque when he would go outside to play hockey on the pond with his friends.
7. Patrick Roy (Colorado Avalanche)
How can you have an NHL top goalie list without the greatest goaltender of all time on it? Patrick's mask had the Rockie mountains as well as a snow monster -- it was a pretty slick mask. However, do you know how hard it is to find a picture close up on his mask? Well, too hard for me.
6. Stephane Fiset (Quebec Nordiques)
Fiset had a really simple yet cool design and theme. Fiset took the saying "That goalie is a wall" and made it into his own helmet. As he was playing "way up in Canada", he made his mask a wall of ice blocks! Awesome and funny helmet.
5. Rick Dipietro (New York Islanders)
Ricks mask with the islanders is a tribute to the American soldiers, with pictures of the soldiers raising up the American flag. It's a really neat mask that is a great tribute to all the men and woman fighting over seas for us.
4. Patrick Lalime (Ottawa Senators)
Lalime was not usually a fan favorite in Ottawa, but his helmet was pretty cool. He had his famous eyes that he always has on his helmet. Over top of the eyes was a senator helmet and then the rest just had really awesome designs. The icing on the cake for the mask was the golden bars for the cage.
in case the first one does not work for you, which has been the case for some people i added a second link.
3. Eddie Belfour (Dallas Stars)
Eddie the Eagle always had a nice helmet with the same theme for every team he played for. His mask always had two eagles on each side of the helmet. This helmet is one of the things he was known for and it became a classic that could not be kept off my list.
2. Felix Potvin(Los Angeles Kings/Toronto Maple Leafs)
I could not decide which helmet of Potvins looked better, his LA one or his Toronto one, so I said "What the heck! I'll put in both!". It was one of NHL's most classic helmets. Potvins helmet represented cartoon character, "Felix the Cat", on it which was his nickname. In case you haven't figured out why his nickname is that, take a look at his first name!
1. Curtis Joseph (wherever he played!)
Curtis Joseph gets my vote for greatest mask of all time. It might be a little biased since he is my favorite goalie, but he does have one hell of a mask. Perfect theme and looks good in many colors, as we know from the many teams he has played for. His helmet represents a rabid dog from the Stephen King book "Cujo". Cujo is also Joseph's nickname. Any player coming down on Cujo had to be intimidated from that mask. Truly a classic!
Picture: Look at image above
-Gerry Cheevers/Shields: Cheevers wore a face mask, with stitches drawn on it. When shields came to the league years later, and played for Cheevers old team the Bruins, he drew a replica of his face mask on his new goalie mask.
- Jacques Plante: Plante is considered one of the most important innovators in hockey. Most notably, Plante was the first NHL goaltender to wear a goalie mask in regulation play on a regular basis. With the assistance of other experts, he developed and tested many versions of the goalie mask, including the forerunner of today's mask/helmet combination.
- Johan Hedberg: He began his career in the IHL with The Manitoba Moose, and throughout his entire career has had a moose on his helmet to represent where it all began for him.
-Dwayne Roloson (Edmonton):Really busy helmet that sported an oil rig, Oilers symbol, gears and a bunch of other cool images. Color was baby blue and had a gold face cage.
This concludes my list of great NHL goalie masks! I hope everyone enjoyed it, and tell me what you think about my list, whether it be negative or positive. Believe me, I took a very long time to decide this list, because there has been so many wonderful NHL masks throughout the years.