Heading into the 2013-14 NHL season, the big question mark for the Philadelphia Flyers was (surprise!) in goal. The offense was expected to do a lot of heavy lifting, and it was assumed that 4-3 or 5-2 games would be normal occurrences for the Flyers. After all, their goaltending tandem consisted of Steve Mason and Ray Emery—a pair not exactly known for being world beaters.
In fact, it could be argued that before the season started, Mason was the worst starting goalie in the NHL. He’d played half of one good season for the Columbus Blue Jackets en route to winning the Calder Trophy. That level of play had vanished though, and he was shipped to the Flyers as an afterthought following Sergei Bobrovsky’s emergence as a Vezina winner.
Things have gone in the exact opposite direction for the Flyers though, as the team struggled to score goals consistently through the first several weeks of the season. Meanwhile, Mason quietly was putting up strong numbers despite losing more often than not. He’s 9-8-2 on the year now, is fifth in the NHL in save percentage (.934) and ninth in GAA (2.09).
His current contract will also expire at the end of this season, making him a restricted free agent.
Mason told Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer that “this (Philadelphia) is where I want to be.” General manager Paul Holmgren indicated that he’d “touch base” with Mason’s agent at some juncture, but there’s no rush since they can’t iron out a new deal until after January 1 anyway.