Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Mason headlines the Flyers' trade deadline

April 3, 2013

The Flyers didn't get a forward that can open up ice for Claude Giroux at the trade deadline. They didn't get a much needed number one defenseman either.

Instead the Flyers acquired goaltender Steve Mason from the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for Michael Leighton and a third-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft.

The winner of the Calder Trophy in 2009, Mason, 24, hasn't enjoyed as much success than in his rookie season with Columbus.

This season has seen him lose his job to Sergei Bobrovsky, who the Flyers traded to Columbus during the off-season and has since emerged as one of the Blue Jackets' biggest stars.

The Flyers were initially after Ben Bishop, the Ottawa Senators' backup goaltender. However, the Flyers backed out after Ottawa asked for Sean Couturier according to ESPN's Pierre LeBrun via Twitter. Bishop wound up in Tampa Bay, since the Lightning were willing to give up their rookie star Cory Conacher

The acquisition of Mason gives the Flyers a much more reliable backup goaltender (no offense to Leighton or Brian Boucher), which could allow head coach Peter Laviolette to feel more confident in letting starter Ilya  Bryzgalov, who has started 33 of the Flyers' 35 games thus far, get some rest.

The problem is, that is where the sense ends.

Mason is in the last year of his contract, carrying a $2.9 million cap hit, and while Bryzgalov is in the second of his hefty nine-year, $51 million contract, he has been the least of the Flyers' concerns.

Well, let the amnesty Bryz buzz begin.

Hall claimed off waivers

Prior to the Mason deal, the Flyers claimed forward Adam Hall off waivers. 

The nine-year veteran, 32, played in six games for the Carolina Hurricanes and 20 for the Tampa Bay Lightning this season. He registered just four assists with the Lightning thus far.

Hall will be the first player to wear number 18, since Mike Richards was traded away.

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