A lot has changed in Washington D.C. since last season, including the goalie situation. On the first day of free agency, new Caps GM Brian MacLellan signed veteran goalie Justin Peters to be Braden Holtby‘s back-up. That means goaltending prospect Philipp Grubauer, who shined in a one-month stint with the team last December, will likely be relegated to the American Hockey League’s Hershey Bears for most of next season.
I bring that up because, um, well, this is awkward. Grubauer’s new mask from Swedish airbrush artist David Gunnarsson is 100% Caps-flavored.
Gunnarsson, in his classic (and unmatched in enthusiasm) Swede-glish, calls the new bucket The Desolation of Grubi, Atomic Breath. I literally have no idea what that means, but Peter tells me it’s an allusion to The Hobbit.
On his Facebook page, Gunnarsson tries his best to explain.
Today we have the pleasure to present the latest artwork for Philipp Grubauer of the Washington Capitals. His last mask named ”The Desolation of Grubi” was a huge success, and here comes the insane continuation…
This design is so fully loaded of energy… atomic energy…so the whole design boils and is ready to erupt… all the colors from the previous design has inverted… and the atomic power is ready to spit fire, or as we call it, deliver some atomic breath! Watch out!
I love to brainstorm and come up with new design ideas together with the goalies day in day out, it is a very creative process. Every mask I create is always 100% unique…!
Of course the whole design is packed with extreme details all over the mask to tell the story of Atomic Breath…:) And for sure all the DAVEART trademark effects is there..
Love to be your painter Grubi! We have so much more cool stuff in the pipeline.
For comparison’s sake, let’s look at the older mask and compare it to the new one.
The Desolation of Grubi
The Desolation of Grubi, Atomic Breath
The new mask is more blue than red. Inverting the colors, as Gunnarsson says, was a smart move. While the name of new mask is more intense than its predecessor, the smaller amount of red actually makes it calmer and lighter.
If this is Grubi’s new mask for next season, it is going to clash like whoa. Red, white, and blue tones will look gaudy above a chocolate-colored jersey. But if– for some reason– Grubauer gets called up to Washington for the Winter Classic, he’s gonna look sharp.