Peter Budaj has ditched soccer heroes and cartoon characters (mostly) on his new Montreal mask, instead paying homage to the historic franchise with a simple but striking design that is heavy on the red, white and blue of the Canadiens.
Budaj’s last lid featured Lionel Messi on one side and Ned Flanders of The Simpsons on the other. The most prominent image on his new Vaughn mask, which was once again painted by popular Swedish artist David Gunnarsson of DaveArt, is the bright red maple leaf on the forehead.
It appears to be the logo worn by the franchise back in 1912-13 – or exactly 100 years ago – and the inclusion of the “CAC” (it stood for “Club Athlétique Canadien” and predated the CH) logo on the right side of the chin appears to confirm the reference. The stylized “Ca” (Canadien Athletic) in the middle of the maple leaf was used as the team’s logo the previous two seasons.
In addition to his number 30 on the chin, the other prominent image is the current Canadiens’ logo, with big versions on either side of the mask and, if you look closely, smaller logos used as a shading tool throughout the rest of the mask.
Budaj did manage to include his usual Ned Flanders (a nickname he got with the Colorado Avalanche) image on the corner of the backplate, which also features Slovakian and Canadian flags, and a bible reference from Joshua 1:9: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Enjoy the closeups of the stunning new mask, courtesy of Vaughn, and be sure to check out more of Gunnarsson’s great artwork on both his website and on his Twitter feed. And for all the new masks in the NHL this season, be sure to visit InGoal’s mask page: