We've had some fun with Ryan Miller's goalie mask here at Fourth-Place Medal, and with good reason — it's beyond amazing. But we finally have a challenger to Miller's "Greatest Helmet" crown. It comes from Canadian skeleton racer Jeff Pain.
Yeah, that is an angry beaver flying at you at 80 mph. What are you gonna do about it?
Pain (great name, by the way) started wearing the beaver on his helmet after the Salt Lake City Olympics, when American Jim Shea took home gold with an eagle on his head. Since the beaver is the national animal of Canada, Pain figured he'd give it a shot, saying, "Well, if they can have their national animal on theirs, might as well have it on ours." Good call.
To his credit, Pain realizes just how silly having a beaver on your helmet really is. "It's funny in one respect and kind of a national symbol," said Pain. "Maybe it will intimidate the other teams. If anything, it's good for a laugh." Good for a lot of laughs, more like.
Hey, it beats Jon Montgomery, who was told by a shaman that his spirit animal is a turtle and subsequently put that on his helmet. When you're a competitor in a speed sport, there can't be anything worse than hearing you're most spiritually in tune with one of the slowest animals on Earth.
So is this the best helmet of the Vancouver Olympics? I'd vote yes. But what do you think? Let us know in the comments.