Steve Mason

Flyers GM still thinks Steve Mason has ‘tremendous upside’


The Philadelphia Flyers didn’t do a ton on the trade deadline, but they at least filled their quota of making trades with the Columbus Blue Jackets. This time it was for failed franchise goalie Steve Mason.

If you’re an extreme optimist, you might wedge “former Calder Trophy winner” in that description instead. Flyers GM Paul Holmgren’s comments to indicate that he ranks among the glass half-full types.

“We like Steve as a young goalie,” Holmgren said. “We still think there’s tremendous upside there. We’ll bring him in and work with him and try to help him achieve his goals of becoming a better goalie as well.”

At 24, he does at least make some sense as a reclamation project. Some thinks he can be more than that, too; during the first intermission of Wednesday’s Night Game, Mike Milbury floated the idea that Mason could be getting an audition to take Ilya Bryzgalov’s job.

Before anything that drastic happens, Mason needs to show that he was more than a flash in the pan. If what Holmgren told is true, proving himself might just get Mason a job beyond this season.

Dropping like flies: Johnson, Killorn hurt in Bolts’ exhibition

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One
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You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.

We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.

“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.

These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.

Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.

It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.

Raffi Torres gets match penalty for being Raffi Torres

Raffi Torres

With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.

It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.

Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:

It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).

As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.

Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:

This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.

Update: Bullet dodged?