The buzz last week around Ilya Bryzgalov's new Star Wars themed goalie mask was so huge that it resulted in someone from Lucasfilm Ltd. reaching out to the Flyers to have the color scheme corrected.
As a refresher, the Flyers posted images of the new mask featuring the legendary characters of Yoda, Darth Vader, and R2D2 on Tuesday, February 26. Flyers fans loved the new space look which seemed fitting to Bryz and his penchant for all things universe related.
The artist who painted the mask, Franny Drummond (PaintZoo.com), told us the reason there were only a few Star Wars characters on the mask was "because Bryz wanted a lot of space."
When Bryz wants space, you give Bryz space.
But the Star Wars fans out there were a bit unhappy that Yoda was seemingly rocking a red light saber, traditionally a symbol of the Sith Lords. I wrote on Tuesday: "Which either means Ilya Bryzgalov has some crazy ideas up in his brain of turning good to evil, or it's just a simple oversight by Bryz or his painter. You never know with that guy."
Turns out, there was absolutely no intentions of turning Yoda or Bryz to the Dark Side.
"We didn't realize we'd be offending anyone," Drummond told me this morning. "Yoda's Lightsaber was actually an orange-ish color before we changed it. We were going for a hint of the Flyers' colors in Yoda as well. There were no bad intentions. It was just a matching thing."
Alas, the anger is strong in young Star Wars fans when you mess with a Jedi Master. And apparently those at Lucasfilm Ltd. as well.
Bryz wore the orange-tinted Yoda mask on Wednesday night against the Capitals (photo below) and played fantastic in a 4-1 Flyers victory. So when they tried to take his mask away from him, Bryz wasn't thrilled. He wanted to bring it home with him.
Someone from Lucasfilm Ltd. got in touch with the Head Equipment Manager of the Flyers and asked that the colors be changed to match the original look of Yoda in the Star Wars movies. Drummond told us that unless the changes were made, Bryzgalov might not be able to wear the mask going forward.
So Drummond found some matching paint and went to work following the Flyers win over the Capitals to give Yoda the proper green color Lightsaber and a more accurate spray tan.
The new look was ready for Saturday's matinee with the Ottawa Senators (photo below). The force was strong in Bryz yet again, holding the evil Senators to a lone goal en route to a 2-1 Flyers victory.
"The new color really pops. You can see it all the way up in the balconies," Drummond said.
"The Star Wars fans won."
And so did Bryz and the Flyers.
Here are three close ups of the artwork, courtesy of Franny Drummond (PaintZoo.com):