Who was the first goaltender to wear a mask in a game? Who was the last to go without one? When did goalies start painting their masks?
These are just a few of the questions-each with a fascinating story behind it-that are answered in this definitive book on goalie masks.
Saving Face: The Art and History of the Goalie Mask looks at the development of the mask from its earliest days as a rudimentary face-saving device to its current high-tech design. bullet-proof construction and cutting-edge artwork.
Saving Face is a visual journey, too. More than 150 historic and modern photos, including 30-plus full-page shots of some of the most famous masks ever created, support a text that weaves the tale of the mask's development.
Based on extensive archival research and exclusive interviews, Saving Face tells the story of the goalies behind the mask, and their fight for the right to wear one. It also looks at mask makers, like the little-known face-mold-making pioneers who experimented with materials such as plastic fiberglass in basement workshops, and the talented artisans and artists behind hockey's modern masterpieces.
While goaltenders the world over owe a debt of thanks to those who created, developed, championed and continuously improved the mask, hockey fans everywhere are thankful too. For the mask today has gone far beyond its original function-saving face-to become the most unique and intriguing piece of equipment in all of sports.
Jim Hynes is a Montreal-based writer and editor who has written about a wide range of subjects, from the history of Montreal to the history of one Canada's oldest golf clubs. A lifelong hockey fan and player, he has played the game for over 35 years...but not even once in net. Jim lives in Beaconsfield, Quebec, with his wife Mary-Margaret and their sons Jason and Samuel.
Gary Smith grew up playing hockey in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, and made his first mask when he was 14 years old. Hockey eventually took him to the East Coast where he was recruited to play golf for St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick. Gary lives in Grand Falls, NB, where he is a school vice principal and continues to make and collect goalie masks. He and his wife, Lissa, have three children, Julie, Sean and Ryan.