What to expect from Steve Mason?
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01-09-2014, 05:35 PM
Join Date: Feb 2009
Originally Posted by
Why does everyone think Masey isn't a good goalie?
Before he’d played and games for Philly last season, his career splits vs east teams [Philly's Conference] were a .920 SV%
His career SV% vs teams in our new metropolitan division is .922
Have you watched him play? Even in Columbus? He’s an amazing goaltender. Unfortunately where most goaltenders have 2-3 years in the AHL & then slowly become acclimated to the NHL as a backup goaltender playing against the leagues poor performing teams, he had to do all of his development [making mistakes & learning from them] on television, while being criticized for not being the city's savior. Even mistakes he's made as he learned to be more mature & would go unnoticed in the AHL are forever memorialized on YouTube.
Playing for the worst [statistically speaking] team in the league for his entire professional career likely wasn't what he'd expected to his NHL career to look like.
At some point that all sinks in & probably didn't have him look forward to playing. The media says he lost his confidence, but if you watch some of his later games in Columbus, it looks more like he lost his passion for the game.
While Philadelphia might be known for being hard on their goalies, I don't think there's much we could say / do here that he's not spent the last 4 years hearing. I think playing in a real hockey market with die hard fans in Philadelphia [And Raleigh, & Miami, & Tampa & just about every other arena they visit] is exactly what he needs to find his passion for the game and remember why he wanted to be an NHL goalie.
Did you watch how differently the Flyers played when he was in the net? When Bryzgalov-The-Terrible was there, we had 5 standing in front because they didn't think he'd be able to stop the puck instead of scoring goals at the other end. When Mason was in net, even the games we didn’t win, the team was still playing 100% better. They trusted Mason to his job & they went back to what they do best. Maybe he's won't find himself on the top half of the leaders board but between his helping the D with his puckhandling & the rest of the team confident he'll do his job, at least back to where we were two years ago — scoring more goals than the goalie lets in to win games — with less problems in the locker room.
And he's really bendy. Most goalies in the NHL end up making face down making snow angels when they try to do a split save or cover the post-to-post. Mason can stay upright in a full to-the-ice split with no five-hole.
And he's BIG. He's not just tall at 6’4”, he’s got 220lbs on his frame & when he’s pushing & shoving the other team's crease-crawlers away from the net, I’ve never seen them even try to push back. If you think about if he might just start taking the whole ‘Broad Street Bullies’ moniker to heart, with ‘Sugar Ray’ Emery & Ron Hextall giving him some tips, Philadelphia just might have itself a goalie fight this year. [I’m just trying to figure who his most likely combatant would end up being.]
And who doesn't love a goalie that can handle his stick? He's already got his first point as a Philadelphia Flyers. And during one of the games he played for us, he hit the puck so hard, even AFTER hitting the boards, he's still managed to end up icing the puck.
For now, let's just write off Columbus as the time he should have spent developing in the AHL, and consider his time in the orange & black as the real start of his NHL career?
This post was actually not too far off...
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