Steve Masons Contract Extension Doesnt Exactly Suggest Bryzgalovs Demise

Steve Masons Contract Extension Doesnt Exactly Suggest Bryzgalovs Demise

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As expected, the Flyers have agreed to a one-year contract
extension with Steve Mason, the goaltender acquired from the Columbus Blue
Jackets at last week’s trade deadline. If compensation is supposed to be any indication
though, it’s unclear why Ilya Bryzgalov should feel an imminent threat.

Mason inked his deal for a very manageable $1.5 million next
season, roughly half of what he would have been due as a restricted free agent
this summer. As for what the big picture viewpoint, it’s not a sum that
suggests he’s in line to become Philly’s starting netminder anytime soon.

Since the trade many observers have suggested Mason’s
arrival could be the beginning of the end for Bryzgalov, a topic we touched on in
greater detail here.
Say what you want about the performance of Bryz, who
carries the eighth-highest average salary in the NHL this season, but Ed Snider
has made it clear he wants to see stability in net.

Choosing to use buyout on Bryz this offseason so the Orange
& Black can go with Mason plus some other inexpensive free agent would
seemingly fly in the face of everything the front office has been saying
publicly.

Does the addition of Mason get the ball rolling for an
eventual change in crease? Sure, it’s a situation to monitor going forward.
However, a one-year, $1.5-million extension shouldn’t set off any alarms that the
Flyers are ready to tear it down quite yet, meaning this upcoming offseason.

We’ll see. You can never be too certain when Paul Holmgren
is pulling the levers, but it appears Bryzgalov will get at least one more
year.

>> Flyers re-sign Steve Mason to 1-year deal [CSN]

Previously: Does Steve Mason Spell the End for Ilya Bryzgalov in Philly?

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Penn State men's hockey ranked No. 1 for first time in program history

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Penn State men's hockey ranked No. 1 for first time in program history

At 16-2-1, Penn State's men's hockey team is ranked first in the nation for the first time in program history.

The Nittany Lions have improved each of the last four years under head coach Guy Gadowsky. 

Their record by year:

      2013-14: 8-26-2
      2014-15: 18-15-4
Last season: 21-13-4
This season: 16-2-1

Penn State received 30 of 50 first-place votes in the USCHO Division I poll. Denver is ranked No. 2, followed by Boston University, Minnesota-Duluth and Massachusetts-Lowell (see USCHO poll).

Penn State was ranked fourth last week before sweeping Michigan State.

Joel Embiid now as dominant as Henry Sims

Joel Embiid now as dominant as Henry Sims

There are seemingly countless metrics one can use to detail Joel Embiid's supremacy as a Sixer, but perhaps no stats more clearly tell the story of how indefatigable the rookie has been this season than those of his free-throw shooting. Despite ranking just eighth on the team in total minutes, he's already gotten to the line 215 times this season and made 169 of them, about 250% more than the second-most made FTs on the team (Ersan Ilyasova, 65). What's more, his seven games with ten or more free throws attempted is already more than Thaddeus Young (six), Evan Turner (three) or Jrue Holiday (zero) ever had as a Liberty Baller. 

But yesterday against the Bucks saw JoJo hit a new level with his foul drawing. Despite essentially being shut down by the Bucks in the first half -- I can't remember if he even had a single bucket at the break -- The Process eventually imposed his will in Milwaukee in a major way, parading to the line in the second half, ending with 22 points (as well as 12 rebounds and five blocks) on 4-9 shooting, getting to the line an astounding 18 times. 

Who was the last Sixers giant to accomplish such a feat, you might wonder? Well... 

Yes, it's been an impressive season for our double-redshirt rookie, and every game he seems to add another immortal name to his list of historical analogues. But not until now could we afford to mention him alongside the great Henry "Lickface" Sims, two-year Process legend whose 18 trips to the free-throw line on April 4, 2014 totally helped us win that random late-season game against the then-rebuilding Boston Celtics. As impossible as it once seemed, it now appears that soon, Embiid's folk herodom will be as self-evident and undeniable to the Sons of Sam as that of Hammerin' Hank himself. 

Get this guy to the All-Star team already.