There are some goalies who have that one mask that personifies or identifies them. Carrying them throughout their career.
While other goalies tend to switch things up every year it seems. Be it because they have been traded multiple times, they get bored with their mask design or maybe superstition gets the best of them.
For this mask, the change was a result of a brand change.
Cristobal Huet started his career as an LA King. He moved on to Montreal where it looked like he was going to blossom into the 'next big goalie' for the Habs. Not quite (thanks to Carey Price).
Before landing in Chicago, he spent some time with the Washington Capitals (remember that?.....me neither).
With Chicago, he never really got the chance to run with the 'number one goalie' ball. And now that there's a log jam in the Chicago goalie department, Huet has been loaned out by the Hawks to a Swiss national team.
While with Chicago, Huet had some pretty nice masks, but in 2009 he decided to switch from his old mask-maker Itech to EddyMask.
At first glance, it would look as if he was going to do the whole 'Home mask / Away mask' thing. Problem is, I don't know if Cristobal would feel comfortable switching back and forth from one designer to the other (a little conflict of interest).
So, he went with the white mask and the rest is history.
Let's take a closer look at the design.
Clearly the motif is the Indian headdress (which has been done many times by Hawks' goalies over the years) and this one looks sharp.
Great color and detail in the feathers and the dreamcatcher on the chin is a real nice touch (one of the few changes from the older 'red' mask to this 'white' one).
The headband lining the top of the cage really finishes the illusion of the headdress and the Blackhawks' logo sits nicely in the ear socket area.
Overall, a real nice mask design taking into account the team colors, name and motifs. One of Huet's better masks during his career. One of the better Chicago masks I've seen (and there have been some great ones).
4 out of 5.
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2015 Topps Mickey Mantle
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