Best Intimidating NHL Goaltender Masks Of 2011

Goaltender is the one position in the National Hockey League where players are granted freedom to design their masks anyway they choose. Since professional hockey is not a sport for the faint of heart, these goalies don’t wear masks that will convey any form of kindliness. Aside from teams competing for the Stanley Cup, we have to believe the goaltenders compete amongst themselves for coolest looking mask. Take a look at the following most-intimidating NHL net-minders’ masks from this year.

10. Kari Lehtonen

Credit: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images Sport

Even though Chuck Norris has been the butt of many jokes over the past few years, there is a reason why Kari Lehtonen of the Dallas Stars chose to sport a mask painted with the master of roundhouse kicks. After all, Chuck did sue the show “Law and Order,” claiming he already trademarked their name for his left and right legs.

9. Al Montoya

Credit: Al Bello/Getty Images Sport

Every once in a while, a new viral video will sprout up of an old man beating up some young thug. That’s because old guys are tough bastards who’ve been in the s***. And the toughest of all old men are old sea captains. New York Islander’s goaltender Al Montoya knows this and dons a mask with a salty seafaring man taking on an ugly sea. This puts the fear in any opponent whose ever tried to beat up his dad and lost, which is every hockey player.

8. Brian Elliot

Credit: Phillip MacCallum/Jim McIsaac/Getty

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” fans will appreciate Brian Elliot‘s loyalty to Casey Jones. When Elliot switched teams from the Ottawa Senators to St. Louis Blues this year, he brought the hockey masked hero over onto his new helmet. The Turtles’ accomplice beats foot soldiers to a pulp with golf clubs, cricket bats and hockey sticks. That’s a painful way to go down.

7. Jason LaBarbera

Credit: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images Sport

As you can see from this mask, Jason LaBarbera of the Phoenix Coyotes is clearly a fan of WWE‘s golden age. His helmet represents some of the biggest wrestling stars of the time, including Brett “The Hitman” Hart, Shawn Michaels and the intense glare of owner and chairman Vince McMahon. We’re pretty sure LaBarbera feels their combined confidence and stretch every time he puts this mask on, and it makes him ready to lay the smackdown on anyone.

6. Tuukka Rask

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Tuukka Rask of the Boston Bruins rocks a fierce red-eyed Grizzly Bear–if that’s even what you can call that monster. Even his name, “Tuukka Rask,” seems like it can be the monstrous bear’s name.

5. Miikka Kiprusoff

Credit: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images Sport

You know Miikka Kiprusoff of the Calgary Flames means business when you see the angry looking red skull on his mask. It looks similar to the villain Red Skull, the Nazi Army leader from Captain America comics.

4. Pekka Rinne

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“Avoid all eye contact” is what Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators is going for with his yellow-eyed, rage-filled beast of a mask. Nothing illustrates intimidation more than avoiding eye contact with your opponent.

3. Justin Peters

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Here is another ferocious animal with razor-sharp teeth. Just Peters of the Carolina Hurricanes wears a mask that looks like a junkyard dog contaminated with super rabies.

2. Thomas Greiss

Credit: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images Sport

How fitting for San Jose Shark’s net-minder Thomas Greiss to go with a wide mouthed great white shark. Who doesn’t think great whites are terrifying? You need to watch “Jaws” again.

1. Curtis McElhinney

Credit: Dave Reginek, Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images

Ducks are supposed to be cute, right? Curtis McElhinney of the Anaheim Ducks found a way to make ducks look like soldiers of Satan’s army. The sharp nailed finger on the side is telling the opposition to “come get some!”

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