Updates from Wednesday, April 30
Randy Miller of NJ.com provides an update on the nature of Steve Mason's injury:
Updates from Thursday, April 24
The Philadelphia Flyers have updated Steve Mason's status for Game 4:
Updates from Wednesday, April 23
Sam Carchidi of The Philadelphia Enquirer has the latest on Steve Mason:
Updates from Tuesday, April 22
Sam Carchidi of The Philadelphia Enquirer has the latest on Mason's status:
Randy Miller of NJ.com reports that Mason later had a change of heart this afternoon:
Fully 100 percent healthy again, Mason will back up Ray Emery for Tuesday night’s game against the Rangers and possibly be back starting for Friday night’s Game 4.
Why not play Mason in Game 3?
“Why?” Flyers coach Craig Berube responded. “Ray won Game 2. Ray’s played well. … (Mason) was injured, he’s better and he’s gonna backup. That’s it.”
Not surprisingly, Berube wouldn’t commit to playing either goalie in Game 4.
“I’m worried about tonight,” he said.
Mason would wind up playing vs. the Rangers after the Flyers fell behind 4-1, per the Flyers twitter:
Updates from Monday, April 21
Arthur Staple of Newsday has the latest on Steve Mason:
Mason spoke about his health and Ray Emery's play (via Sarah Baicker of CSNPhilly.com):
“Every day, honestly, it’s a different story,” Mason said. “Some days are really good and others aren’t great. Today was better. We’ll just hope tomorrow’s even better than today.”
“Right now, the way Razor’s playing, there’s no hurry,” Mason said. “He’s the reason we won yesterday, so I think even if I was ready there’s no reason to take him out right now.”
Updates from Saturday, April 19
Jim Cerny of NHL.com has the latest on Mason:
However, Randy Miller of NJ.com reports that the goalie will be out for Game 2:
Updates from Friday, April 18
Sam Carchidi of The Philadelphia Inquirer confirms Steve Mason returned to practice today and provides a synopsis of Mason discussing his potential return to the ice:
Updates from Thursday, April 17
Steve Mason's status was updated prior to Thursday's Game 1 vs. New York (via Jeff Zipay of Newsday and Katie Strang of ESPN):
Philadelphia Flyers starting goaltender Steve Mason is going miss at least Game 1 of the team's playoff clash with the New York Rangers due to injury. Ray Emery will draw the start.
The Flyers made the announcement on Wednesday, one day before their Round 1 series is set to begin:
Mason was injured in Philadelphia's penultimate game of the regular season against the Pittsburgh Penguins when Andrew MacDonald fell on him following a check from Jayson Megna. He was forced to leave that contest and didn't play in the finale.
Randy Miller of NJ.com passed along comments from Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren earlier in the week about the situation. He said medical clearance wouldn't be necessary, but provided no further details about the ailment or when the netminder would be available:
"I'm not going to comment on that," GM Paul Holmgren said. "Right now we'll just stick with upper-body injury. He's dealing with some issues there."
Holmgren said Mason doesn't need medical clearance to play.
"No, it's more treatment," he said. "We're in a critical time in our season right now. I don't feel I need to divulge what's wrong with a player."
He also provided brief remarks from Mason that were sent through the team's public relations staff. He didn't yield any light on the subject, simply stating: "I feel better each day and we’ll see how I feel tomorrow."
Apparently not enough progress was made for him to play in the opening game. Furthermore, Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News notes Mason isn't traveling with the team to New York, which is also the site of Game 2:
Mason appeared in 61 games during the regular season. He posted a 2.50 goals against average and a .917 save percentage to go along with four shutouts.
Emery wasn't nearly as reliable. His goals against average was nearly a half-goal higher at 2.96 and his save percentage was a lackluster .903. He also finished the regular season with a losing record, going 9-12-2 in 23 decisions.
Given how evenly matched the Flyers and Rangers are—they finished just two points apart in the standings and split four meetings during the regular season—the absence of Mason is definitely going to have an impact.
Philadelphia just has to hope it can keep the series close until he's ready to return, assuming the injury isn't more serious than the team is letting on. Emery does have 36 games of postseason experience, but his save percentage in those games is identical to his .903 mark from this season.
The Flyers could still advance if he's forced to start for more than one game, but it definitely would lessen their margin for error.