Ottawa Senators fans have made it known they'd love to welcome Ryan Reynolds as part of the team's new ownership group, and now one of their players is sharing the same sentiment.
Sens goalie Cam Talbot broke out a brand new mask Wednesday, one featuring artwork of Deadpool, the comic book character Reynolds has played on the big screen in the film series of the same name.
"[With] the rumours and stuff that Ryan Reynolds might be coming aboard the new ownership group, I thought it'd be pretty fitting. And the colours actually fit pretty well too," Talbot said at the Canadian Tire Centre during practice.
"Any added incentive I figured I could add to that, it might help. So we'll see what comes to fruition here."
The film star confirmed his interest in being part of a bid to buy the Ottawa Senators — and keep them in the nation's capital — late last year, vowing to become a "frothy, rabies-infused" fan were his efforts to succeed.
Former owner Eugene Melnyk, who died in March, bought the club in 2003 for $92 million US at a time when the franchise was facing both bankruptcy and a tenuous future in the nation's capital.
Melnyk's daughters own the team and put it up for sale in November amid rumours that Reynolds was interested in adding to his diverse portfolio — he already owns a gin distillery and a telecom and is part-owner of a Welsh soccer team.
Auction for charity?
Talbot said he hopes to put the mask to use off the ice as well.
"I know he's big into charities and stuff like that. Maybe we can get him to sign the mask and have it auctioned off for charity," Talbot said. "Might be pretty cool if we can get him in here to do that.
"If nothing else it's a pretty cool mask I get to wear," he added.
A few hours after Talbot tweeted out a video of the Deadpool mask, Reynolds responded.
"I think we both just got a new mask. And this one is a tad more breathable," the celebrity tweeted in response.
The mask was designed by Dave Fried of Alberta-based Friedesigns, who was just fresh off creating a mask for fellow Sens netminder Anton Forsberg.
"[Talbot] sent me a text a couple of days later with the Deadpool idea, and right away I knew it was going to be a huge exciting mask for the fans," Fried said from his Calgary office.
As for the actual look, Fried said Talbot left that up to him. He ultimately decided to capture the "cheeky side" of the character, depicting him holding a foam "Go Sens Go" finger on one side of the mask and a Canadian flag and a Tim Hortons coffee on the other.
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"I sent him a design, and he right away said, 'Awesome,'" Fried said.
As for the prospect of Reynolds becoming a part-owner, Fried is with Talbot.
"I think he'd be a great ambassador for the NHL and for the Senators," he said. "If this was a little nudge towards it, I'd be stoked to be part of that."