Cory Schneider pays homage to Canucks with new mask
Update: This mask was broken in practice during the playoffs – Schneider has a sharp new retro look – and we have lots of photos plus a video here.
Have you seen InGoal – the online Magazine?
It’s too bad Cory Schneider seems destined to sit on the bench behind Roberto Luongo most of the season, because the Vancouver Canucks’ highly touted young backup is sporting a new mask that deserves a much bigger spotlight.
With his first full NHL season a certainty after signing a one-way contract this summer following three years in the American Hockey League, Schneider traded in his old mask featuring Canucks logos on one side and the emblems of their AHL affiliate, the Manitoba Moose, on the other. In its place is a fitting and memorable tribute to the goaltenders who skated before him in Vancouver.
“Because this is the 40th anniversary I thought it would be cool to pay homage to the old Canucks,” Schneider told InGoal Magazine of yearlong celebrations of the inaugural season. “I thought I’d throw together a montage commemorating 40 years of goalies that played, all the notable masks from Canucks history.”
The list includes masks worn by current Canucks television color commentator John Garrett and 1994 playoff hero Kirk McLean. But at the top of that list for many Canucks fans is the stick-and-rink logo worn as a cross by Curt Ridley from 1976 through 1978 that now appears above Schneider’s right ear. Ridley, who is now a salesman in Texas, still gets several mail requests each week for autographed pictures of him in the mask.
If Ridley’s mask is a favorite of Canucks fans, the Gary Bromley skull mask that now appears on Schneider’s left temple is one of the NHL’s all-time greats.
The mask, which features a life-like skull, complete with teeth, has long been a best seller among classic mask collectors, often outselling bigger names like Ken Dryden and Jacques Plante in the replica mask industry. Its effect can still be seen in skull- and skeleton-themed lids from Pee Wee to the NHL, even if the idea behind the original was more about being skinny than a trendsetter.
Schneider has made sure it will stay that way for another generation of fans in Vancouver with his new mask, which also features a blend of old and new Canucks logos making their way down the left side, across the chin and up the right.
Painted by Derek Gilders, Schneider’s tribute mask also features an American flag and his nickname, “Schneids” on the backplate. But in the rush to get it finished – he didn’t want to be presumptuous and order it too far in advance of earning his first NHL job, no matter what the contract said – there is a saying missing from the back that Schneider will likely have added in the near future.
“None shall pass,” Schneider said of the missing motto. “My dad and I are big Monty Python fans so we stole that from The Holy Grail and I put it on all my masks as kind of our little thing. But other than that I’m not too sentimental. I just wanted it to look cool and be blend of old and new.”
Taking a look at the full-sized pictures, below we’d think that mission has been accomplished.
Thanks to Masks from the Past for use of the Gary Bromley and Curt Ridley Masks