Washington rookie Philipp Grubauer has made quite an impression on the Capitals.
The 22-year-old German has gone 3-0-1 with a .937 save percentage since being recalled after Michal Neuvirth injured his ankle when he stepped on a puck coming out for warm ups on Nov. 29, even earning some starts ahead of Canadian Olympic hopeful Braden Holtby. But with time running out on Neuvirth’s conditioning stint in the AHL, Grubauer seems destined to return to the Hershey Bears sooner rather than later.
Thanks to artist Jason Livery of HeadStrongGrafx, he’ll have the perfect mask for it. After wearing last year’s Capitals’ themed lid during the recall, Grubauer will return to a new paint job that is more decidedly split between the two teams, with a Washington theme on the left, and a Hershey look on the right.
That Hershey look includes a roaring bear tearing through the mask, all done in a chocolate brown appropriate to the town – and the sweets company that drives its economy. There is also a German flag.
The Washington side features an eagle glaring through the rips, with a Bavarian flag and Capitals logo.
Grubauer’s nickname, “Grubi,” remains on the chin, as it was in his last mask.
The only question is how long he’ll need it. Grubauer may want to get another, all-Capitals paint job prepared for the future, but for now his status behind Holtby and Neuvirth on the depth chart, and no need to clear waivers to be sent down, means a split-personality look is a good fit.