Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 01/15/13 at 06:08 AM ET
from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,
A pair of 24-year-olds, Steve Mason and Sergei Bobrovsky, will share that duty until one of them wins the net. Coach Todd Richards has been clear about riding whoever is winning. Both goalies have had hot spells during their short careers. Both have gone cold.
Mason appeared to be a godsend — he won 33 games, had 10 shutouts and carried the Jackets to the playoffs in his rookie season of 2008-09 — but he has not been the same since. Statistically, his worst season was his last.
Bobrovsky’s story is similar to, if shorter than, Mason’s. Bobrovsky had a sterling rookie season for the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010-11 until he was benched in the playoffs. He came back with a record of 14-10-2 with a save percentage of .899 and a 3.02 goals-against average last season. (Those numbers were startlingly similar to Mason’s. And, by the way, the two are a combined 0-6 in the playoffs.)
With no expectations for the goaltenders, the position will make for a fascinating study in the coming months. The Jackets on Saturday begin a 99-day sprint. A goaltender or two can, conceivably, make the difference between eighth place and 15th. Mason and Bobrovsky have shown some potential. Can one or the other or both carry the Jackets?
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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