The Philadelphia Flyers earned a much needed 3-1 victory over the Washington Capitals this afternoon, but a dark cloud hung over their accomplishment as starting goaltender Steve Mason left the game due to a lower-body injury.
After the contest, Flyers GM Ron Hextall confirmed that Mason wouldn’t be able to come with the team to Montreal for Tuesday’s game and he’d “be surprised” if the 26-year-old netminder played at all during Philadelphia’s upcoming three-game road trip. That being said, the full extent of Mason’s injury isn’t known.
To make matters worse, the man Philadelphia would have likely summoned from the AHL, Rob Zepp, is also hurt.
“We only have one other guy under contract, so you guys can probably figure that one out,” Hextall told reporters with a smile on his face. The man Hextall is referring to is Anthony Stolarz, who is 20 years old and has a 2.99 GAA and .912 save percentage in 21 contests as an AHL rookie. Hextall admitted that Stolarz probably isn’t ready to play in the NHL, but he’ll nevertheless back up Ray Emery, who has a 3.34 GAA and .886 save percentage in 21 games.
Unless of course Hextall wants to put on his pads.
“If I were 15 years younger I might try,” said the 50-year-old general manager.
This will be Mason’s third stint on the sidelines this season. He previously dealt with knee and back problems.
With a 23-22-8 record, Philadelphia is nine points shy of a playoff spot, although that might change depending on the outcome of Boston’s contest against Montreal tonight.
You can watch Hextall’s press conference below: