Chris Carrozzi’s claim to fame.

St. John’s, Newfoundland, is more than 4,000 miles away from Ontario, California. To say it’s half a world away is not inaccurate.

One thing the two cities happen to have in common is hockey; the St. John’s IceCaps joined the American Hockey League this season, and even briefly employed a Reign player, defenseman Mike Montgomery.

Reign goalie Chris Carrozzi figured he’d spend some time in St. John’s; he is a Winnipeg Jets prospect and the IceCaps are a Jets affiliate. So over the summer he ordered his goalie mask painted in IceCaps colors (after the jump):

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There’s his mask, photographed with my blurry BlackBerry photography skills.

Here’s the funny thing: It’s believed to be the only such mask in existence. And it’s sitting 4,000-plus miles away from Newfoundland in (usually) sunny Southern California.

The IceCaps only came into existence over the summer, when the Atlanta Thrashers became the Jets and moved to Winnipeg. (That displaced the local AHL team, the Manitoba Moose, whose franchise charter was flipped to St. John’s.) So there hasn’t been much time for any IceCaps masks to be minted.

Turns out that none of the three goalies currently employed by the IceCaps — David Aebischer, Peter Mannino or Edward Pasquale — have IceCaps-themed masks. Carrozzi’s lid has gone where no goalie headgear has gone before. While there may be others in the future, his is the first.

Carrozzi, for his part, maintains a mellow attitude about his claim to fame, but we think it’s pretty cool.

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About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Orange County Register, Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.