Despite a painfully slow start, the Philadelphia Flyers are still in the playoff hunt, and they have one man to thank for that: Goaltender Steve Mason. Mason has been phenomenal this season.
He is 6th in the league in save percentage, and 10th in goals against average. To be in the top 10 in both of these categories with the amount of defensive breakdowns the Flyers have had is nothing short of miraculous.
Put simply, Mason has saved the Flyers season. He looks to have resurrected his career in Philadelphia. Remember, with the Columbus Blue Jackets Mason won the Calder Memorial Trophy as the league’s top rookie. His play then fell off, and he fell out of favor in Columbus.
The Flyers and Mason have both benefited immensely from the young goalie’s change of scenery. Goaltending coach Jeff Reese seems to have been a god send for Mason. He has taught him to stay bigger in the net by using his big frame and be more disciplined in his angles.
The hard work of Mason and the tutelage of Reese seems to have made all the difference. In his short time with the Flyers he looks like a totally different goalie. He is stopping every puck he needs to and has already stolen a number of games for the Flyers with his miraculous play.
Can Mason win the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goalie? At this rate absolutely yes. He is only getting better and better as the year goes on. If the Flyers seal up a playoff berth and he keeps stopping pucks at an impressive clip I believe Mason should be the front-runner to take home the Vezina.