I am continuing my retrospective of the 2011-12 NHL goalie masks, focusing on my favorite few to begin with. Last week I began with Ilya Bryzgalov’s mask, which I will admit is my favorite of the season. The next few are some of my favorites, but I can’t really say for sure they are in any particular order. I like them all and can’t decide which one I like more than the others. So I will just start with Corey Crawford of the Chicago Blackhawks, since I have really liked his masks over the past two seasons.
Corey began the season wearing the mask above, which was also the mask he wore during the 2010-11 season. His mask artist was Stephane Bergeron of La Griffe Originale. This was one of my very favorite masks from that 2010-11 seasons. I feel it is a beautiful mask with crisp and clean colors. The Native American theme is not overdone but is very well represented. The feathers on the sides of the mask were my favorite part and I thought they looked really sharp in white, black, red, and shades of gray.
I was also impressed by the fact that he included a representation of the “End of the Trail” sculpture by James Earle Fraser on his backplate. That sculpture is one of the most iconic figures in Native American history in the U.S.
In February 2012, Corey began wearing a new version of the same mask (one with a black base and darker colors.) Some felt he would wear one with their home uniforms and the other with their away uniforms, but that is not what ended up happening. I have seen photos of him wearing the black mask with both uniforms, and then it seems he went back to the white one for the last month of the season or so.
I also liked this darker version of the mask, but it did not wow me as much as the white one. The white one just really stood out.
I welcome your comments or questions about these masks or any others.