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The Goalie Mask Artist

from Tom Perrotta of the Wall Street Journal,

When Ben Bishop, the goalie for the Tampa Bay Lightning, received his new mask last year, he had a thought. The mask had a splotch of glow-in-the-dark paint on it, about the size of a quarter. Bishop liked it. A lot. So he called David Gunnarsson, the NHL’s mask maestro, with a question.

“I asked if we could make the whole thing glow,” Bishop said. “That was the first one in the league like that.”

Painted masks have a long history in the NHL. Gerry Cheevers, who drew black stiches on his white fiberglass faceplate, is known as the first player to doctor his mask, in the 1960s. Ken Dryden’s mask looked like a bulls-eye with Montreal’s colors. Ed Belfour’s mask had an eagle; Curtis Joseph, nicknamed CuJo, wore a mask with a rabid dog inspired by the Stephen King novel of the same name.

In today’s NHL, pretty much every goalie has a custom mask, except the details, themes, and colors are wilder and more intricate than ever. That’s because of Gunnarsson, a 39-year-old self-taught artist who lives in Sweden.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Hockey Equipment, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: david+gunnarsson


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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com


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