As a must-win game four looms, we are yet to hear an announcement on who will start between the pipes for the Flyers, as they look to avoid going back to New York down three games to one. Conventional wisdom would suggest that Steve Mason, who finished off game three after a tough performance from Ray Emery, and appears to be back at full-health for the first time this playoffs, will get the start. He doesn’t see it as that cut and dry.
“I have no expectations,” Mason told reporters Thursday. “If Chief [Craig Berube] says I’m in, then I’ll be ready.”
While being interviewed, Mason did also discuss the fact that he isn’t in a great rhythm right now, considering that he is yet to get a playoff start due to an upper-body injury. Certainly a big game four win, which would hopefully propel the Flyers to rattle off a few start wins, could get Mason in that rhythm, but a rough performance from Mason would likely doom the Flyers chances of winning the series. Had Emery played well in Game three, those factors, and the fact that Mason doesn’t exactly seem ready to seize the opportunity to step back in his starting role, partially make me wonder whether they Flyers wouldn’t be better served starting Emery again. That said, seeing how poorly he played in game three, going with Emery again, assuming Mason is ready to start, doesn’t make much sense.
Take it for what it is, about ten minutes before he tweeted out an article talking about Steve Mason not having ‘expectations’ to start in Game three, CSN Philly’s Flyers insider Tim Panaccio did report via Twitter that he expected Mason back in the net for Game four. I’m not sure if Mason’s quotes altered that view, but my guess is that Mason will get the nod in Game four.