Eddie Lack made sure his new pads and gloves from Brian’s Custom Sports were a perfect match to the 1915 Vancouver Millionaire uniforms that the Vancouver Canucks will wear against the Ottawa Senators during the outdoor Heritage Classic game on Sunday.
But the happy-go-lucky rookie backup saved room on his matching mask to honour his fellow Swedish Canucks.
Painted again by Swedish artist David Gunnarsson of DaveArt, Lack’s new outdoor game mask features portraits of Markus Naslund and Mattias Ohlund on the left side, with Thomas Gradin and Johan Hedberg on the other. Instead of a portrait, however, Hedberg is represented by his famous Moose mask, which was also painted by Gunnarsson.
Missing from the front of the mask, however, are Daniel and Henrik Sedin.
Turns out they got relegated to the backplate, along with Lack’s dad and the Swedish Chef from the Muppets.
“I explained to Henrik they are still active players and once they retire, they are in the front,” Lack said with a smile.
The chin of the mask features an Orca painted in the style of Haida Gwaii artists, a nod to a preseason trip to northern British Columbia communities of Prince Rupert and Massett. There is a similar image on the traditional hand-woven, hand-painted wicker hat that was given to the team by the people of Haida Gwaii and is passed around to honor the player of the game after each win.
“Me, (equipment manager) Patty [O'Neil] and (assistant equipment manager) Jamie [Hendricks] all came up with the idea for mask, the pads and gloves and the mask from the start,” Lack said.
Lack, who grew up playing hockey outdoors in Sweden, including some games and practices, had the pads and gloves custom made by his longtime equipment company, Brian’s Custom Sports, to match the Vancouver Millionaire jerseys the team wore in the 1915 and 1921 Stanley Cup Finals against the Senators. And while most thought the gear would be relegated to the bench, back to back starts ahead of Roberto Luongo has some now believing Lack might actually play the big outdoor game against the Senators.
Either way, enjoy these shots of the new mask from Gunnarsson – and for more great artwork check out his website, his Facebook page, and his Twitter feed – as well as some action shots of the complete set up from Canucks practice this week: