The Origin of the Hockey Mask

Perhaps one of the most iconic images in hockey is the goalie mask. Donned by chainsaw wielding movie villains, crime fighters, and near-sighted hockey fans, it has become a famous symbol.

But can you believe that just 50 years ago, hockey goalies didn’t even wear masks?

It wasn’t until November 1, 1959 that, after taking a puck to the face, the late Jacques Plante decided his homemade mask would be a permanent addition to his protective equipment. Against the wishes of his coach and facing criticism from other goalies, Plante continued to sport the mask for the remainder of his career. By the time he retired, just about every goalie adopted his style. Plante chose to reject the status quo and do what was best for him. Today, there isn’t a goalie foolish enough to go without a mask. So this Halloween when you see a goalie mask, maybe you’ll think of it as more than just a silly prop, but  a symbol of innovation. What will be the next game changer? What could you do to improve your game?


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1 Comment

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