Chris Mason Winnipeg Jets Iron Maiden Mask left

Among many reasons Chris Mason is excited to get to Winnipeg is a chance to wear his new mask, complete with an Iron Maiden Eddie (full size photos below).

Chris Mason could hardly hide his excitement about packing up the family for Saturday’s drive to Winnipeg.

Not only was the trip from his summer home in native Red Deer, Alberta considerably closer than last year’s pre-season roadie to Atlanta, but with all due respect to the fans in Atlanta, Mason sees the chance to stop pucks for the Jets as a boyhood dream come true.

“I was definitely Bob Essensa on the driveway a lot,” Mason told InGoal Magazine shortly before leaving. “It’s home, or close to home, and any athlete would jump at the opportunity to play close to home, especially getting later in a career, having a couple young children, and being so accessible to our family. And playing for a team we grew up watching is another major honor for me. I just can’t wait.”

Aiding in Mason’s excitement is what is waiting for him Monday in Winnipeg — his new mask, a first for the new Jets franchise.

Commissioned especially for him and painted by Steve Nash of Eyecandyair, Mason put a lot of thought into his new lid, and not just because it will become a piece of history as part of the first NHL season back in Winnipeg. Mason has always put a lot of effort into his masks, taking the time to sketch out his own ideas and then counting on  Nash “to make it 10 times better.”

That wasn’t easy this time, in part because they haven’t seen the uniform, but after carefully considering retro and tribute themes, they focused instead on the Jets name and new logo, adding in an Iron Maiden twist to produce some impressive results.

Mason’s thoughts on the process are mixed in with the pictures below – and he talks more about Winnipeg-versus-Atlanta from a player’s perspective at the bottom – but for more of Nash’s fantastic work please follow them on Twitter and “like” their Facebook page today. You can also click on the pictures to go direct to their Mason page.

Chris Mason Winnipeg Jets Iron Maiden Mask right

“We went back and forth, lots of phone calls, and I sent Steve some sketches and he did some art and sent him back and we mulled over a bunch of different ideas, and then he came up with the Iron Maiden Eddie in the old fighter jet and I thought it was perfect and I loved the image and thought that was really appropriate for the Jets,” Mason said of the band’s famous mascot.  “I’m a fan of a few songs and Aces High is one song I really like too, so it’s kind of perfect I like the song and the artwork for the single was this Eddie in a plane.”

The Iron Maiden Eddie in question appeared on the Aces High album cover, and was originally created by artist Derek Riggs, an artist that inspired Steve Nash throughout his own career.

 

Chris Mason Winnipeg Jets Iron Maiden Mask left    

The Jets theme continues with a team logo on the chin (below) and military wings extending from the front up the sides.

“We did a modified Jets logo and put my number (50) on the wing, and I think it looks awesome with the Maple Leaf behind the jet,” Mason said. “I’m a big fan of the logo, and I just love having the Maple Leaf on my mask, so I’m really excited about that.”

 Chris Mason Winnipeg Jets Iron Maiden Mask Front

The back plate (below) is where things get personal for Mason, who is expecting his second daughter in October.

“Steve came up with an eagle family done in native art style,” said Mason, who will once again be wearing a mask made by Tony Priolo at Sportmask. “It’s a mother eagle protecting her two young children with sky in background. I think it just looks awesome.”

(If you look closely, you can spot the family name spelt out across the wings)

 Chris Mason Winnipeg Jets Iron Maiden Mask backplate

Mason had repeated praise for the work put in by the husband-and-wife duo of Steve and Steph at EyeCandyAir, especially under difficult circumstances given the lack of information on the look of the new Jets jerseys. And if the team eventually decides to pay more respects to their past with a throwback jersey night, don’t be surprised if Mason and Nash are working together again on a retro-themed lid.

That one will be easier to figure out.

“Definitely my favorite Jets mask was Bob Essensa,” Mason said of the current Boston Bruins’ goalie coach. “So if they do a third jersey with something like that I would have definitely one something like his or close to his because I loved his masks.”

For now, Mason is just happy to follow in Essensa’s skate strides, instead of pretending to in his driveway.

“I’m so excited to get to Winnipeg,” Mason said. “I’ve always wanted to play in Canada and I’m just really excited to get that chance. I know it might not be the most popular answer for people in Atlanta but that’s how I feel. I’m looking forward to this a lot.

“It was tough in Atlanta because in my opinion it just wasn’t an optimal hockey market. The fans there were awesome but there just wasn’t a broad range of support, so it was tough some nights to have that feeling it didn’t matter so much and hockey wasn’t the most important thing. Going to Winnipeg you’re not going to have that feeling at all. It’s going to be everywhere, it’s going to be the opposite spectrum.”

Chris Mason Winnipeg Jets Iron Maiden Mask top

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33 Responses to Mason pumped about Winnipeg, new Jets Mask with Iron Maiden Mascot

  1. machinistgoalie says:

    Win. An epic win on every level.

  2. patrick says:

    Wow simply amazing mask, possibly one of the best I have seen as of late great detail not over done very good mask!!

  3. Matt in Montreal says:

    Oh yeah, that’s sick!

  4. JR says:

    Awesome mask Chris!!! We can’t wait till game one vs Montreal!

  5. Danny says:

    Got jets in them Spitfires?

  6. Sven says:

    Absolutely awesome

  7. barry says:

    look good lot better than some other mask habs leafs oilers ewwwwwwww they suck worse in league

  8. Capsrockva says:

    Love the mask. Hopefully he takes it to “live after Dark” levels or Powerslave

  9. Tracy says:

    Absolutly love this mask. Can’t wait to blow the roof off the MTS Centre Oct 9th. Welcome to Wpg Chris!

  10. Derek says:

    One word….”AWESOME”

  11. Geo says:

    Awesome mask! Tailgunner!

    its about time for another Iron Maiden themed mask in the NHL.

    I think the last goalie to wear “Eddie” on his mask was Roman Turek with Dallas,St,Louis and Calgary.

    UP THE IRONS!

  12. KrisMerrells says:

    Maiden Manitoba!

  13. Chris says:

    I love the whole concept … my only critique would be I that I think it would have been even better with one big ‘Eddie’ design turned 90 degrees, centered from the front for the top half design & filling the mask that way. Keeping the chin and jaw the same. I am not 100% sure on the white cage. All that said its awesome as is.

  14. Greg says:

    Awesome mask!!!

  15. DJG says:

    Unfortunately Winnipeg Jets don’t have propellors.
    Nice mask either way, but Eddie should be flying a jet.

  16. Nick H. says:

    WWWOOOOOOOOwwwww! Very cool mask!

  17. Sean R says:

    I dig the mask. A lot. But really. A little research before posting an article would help. There is no “Aces High” album by Iron Maiden. Aces High is on “Powerslave” and the cover is an Egypt theme with Eddie is the Sphinx.
    The mask is killer and the concept is very cool though. It fits the whole Jets thing perfectly.

  18. The Jerk says:

    What a shitty mask C-C-C-C-C-C-C-COMBO BREAKER!

    Just kidding, it’s pretty amazing. I always love when goalies have music references on their masks…even if it’s Carey Price.

  19. karri S. says:

    So maybe Mason should worry about his play instead of running his mouth? Last year he basically had terrible outings for many games causing Pavs to be over used. Cool mask.

  20. Dan Glatt says:

    Truly a great mask! My only complaint is that my idea for my mask got swiped before I could do it!

  21. starbuck says:

    Ascending and turning our spitfires to face them,
    Heading straight for them I press down my guns.

  22. Mike from Winnipeg says:

    Heh. For a guy that claims to be inspired by Riggs, you’d think he’d have known that Eddie was flying a propeller equipped Spitfire and not an “old fighter jet”.
    Got to like the new mask though. Nice lines, you can actually see what’s on it from the stands and it has Eddie. What could be better?

  23. DL says:

    Not really an IM fan, but an excellent clean design combining simplicity and detail. The backplate is really creative. Mase is a smart guy, and it shows in this design.

  24. aharper says:

    sweet mask !!!

  25. fes says:

    sweet mask. i wish he had something this cool when he was in atlanta. that said, i hope the jets lose every freaking night. the nhl is still dead to me.

    r.i.p. thrashers. \m/

  26. thom says:

    both Chris and Ondrej have great masks for the Jets return but ‘EDDIE’ gives Chris the edge

  27. ghost rider says:

    love it the iron maiden logo on the side i think the sparkles are cute but how he used them with the mask and the drawings its great the back plate is what caught my eye its awesome.

  28. Colin says:

    “IRON MASON”

  29. Jeff says:

    Two of the greatest things in the world! that is the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen!

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