Zatkoff’s Bold Design For New Penguins Mask
Jeff Zatkoff surprised a few people last year, maybe even himself.
Having never played in the NHL before, he stepped into an emergency backup role when expected Penguins backup Tomas Vokoun underwent surgery to dissolve a dangerous blood clot just before the 2013-2014 season started.
Zatkoff performed admirably, appearing in 20 games for Pittsburgh and spelling Marc-Andre Fleury when necessary. While he’ll likely start the season in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton with the acquisition of Thomas Greiss, Zatkoff has an awesome new mask from Sylvie Marsolais at SylaBrush with a bold Penguins design if indeed he is needed by the big club again.
According to Marsolais, “Jeff always like clean classic mask design, no frills, a straight up old school mask.”
Well Jeff, ask you and you shall receive.
The left and right sides of the mask are dominated by the classic “skating penguin” logo against a pearl white background. The Vaughn mask, made by Pro’s Choice, goes white on white, with a cage designed to match the helmet itself. Stretching from the left side along the chin and up to the rightmost limit of the mask is a large “PENGUINS” in the font used for most of the team’s wordmarks.
If bold was the target, we’d say it’s a bullseye for Marsolais and Zatkoff.
Along the top of the cage, “Pittsburgh” is spelled out and as one moves above that, you can see perhaps the coolest detail of the mask. As an ode to the United States military, Zatkoff and Marsolais designed a classic military crest with the penguin added in. The reflective nature of the logos on the pearl background ensures “when the light hits them you can see it all”. The backplate of the mask has the “M” for Miami University of Ohio with an intertwined military appreciation ribbon. Just below that is “El Lobo”, a reference to the wolves that Zatkoff had on his first mask.
With the injury to Tomas Vokoun before the season last year, it’s likely the casual fan was scratching their head as to where some help might be found between the pipes. Enter Zatkoff. Originally drafted by the Los Angeles Kings 7rth overall in 2006, the 27 year old Detroit native played four seasons with the AHL Manchester Monarchs before signing a two year deal with the Penguins in July of 2012, and signing a two year extension last December. In 20 games last year with Pittsburgh, Zatkoff went 12-6-2, posting a .912 SV%, a 2.61 GAA, and one shutout. As mentioned, the Penguins acquired Thomas Greiss in the offseason and that likely pushes Zatkoff into the starting role in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, but he has a seriously impressive mask thanks to Sylvie and will make the most of any opportunity he has in Pittsburgh.
Marsolais was also the artist of Zatkoff’s Stadium mask last year and to see more of her work, visit the Sylabrush web site www.sylabrush.com, or her Facebook page, and follow her on Twitter. You can see the rest of Jeff Zatkoff’s mask below!