VANCOUVER, British Columbia _ Inexplicably, the person(s) from Sportsnet Pacific who selected the three stars after the Flyers' 4-3 shootout win over Vancouver on Monday night overlooked Steve Mason.
Vancouver's Daniel Sedin was named the No. 1 star, followed by the Flyers' Claude Giroux, and the Canucks' Jannik Hansen.
It should have looked like this: 1. Steve Mason; 2. Steve Mason; 3. Steve Mason.
The Flyers had no business getting a point, let alone two points, at Rogers Arena.
Yet, they somehow skated off the ice with the shootout victory over the talented Canucks.
All because of Mason.
Mason was spectacular, making 41 saves, stopping breakaways, two on ones and point-blank shots.
The 6-foot-4 goaltender also stopped all three shots in the shootout.
“He was awesome once again; we’ve been saying that a lot this year,” said Brayden Schenn, who sent the game into overtime by scoring with 47 seconds left in regulation. “He bailed us out.”
Mason said he didn’t mind facing a season-high 44 shots.
“I actually enjoyed it; it was nice to get into a game and feel like you’re doing something out there,” he said after the Flyers’ third straight victory. “I was very confident out there tonight. I’m happy with my game.”
With Mason pulled for an extra attacker, Schenn ended a 16-game goal drought taking a tipped pass from Scott Hartnell and tapping in his eighth goal to tie the score.
"It feels good. Long overdue. The monkey’s off the back,” Schenn said. “….When you’re not scoring, you tend to think a little more out there than normal, and hopefully I can keep it rolling.”
Daniel Sedin had given Vancouver a 3-2 lead when his shot deflected off Luke Schenn _ Brayden’s older brother _ and past Mason with 2:48 remaining in regulation.
“Luke’s just trying to get back to the net there and it was an unfortunate bounce,” Mason said. “….I thought right after that goal, that was probably the hardest we were working the entire game.”
Luke Schenn, who was minus-3 on the night, was extra appreciative of his brother’s tally.
“He said, ‘Thanks for bailing me out,’ ” Brayden Schenn said with a laugh. “He said, ‘I got one and you got one.’ ”
The Flyers were badly outplayed for most of the game. That explains why coach Craig Berube was not in a happy mood after the victory.
“Not very good,” said Berube when asked to assess the performance of the team, excluding Mason. “Couldn’t defend.”
The Flyers, who moved to within three points of second-place Washington in the Metro Division, will play at lowly Calgary on Tuesday night.
“They better defend a lot better than they did tonight,” Berube said. “If not, they’ll be in trouble.”
Vancouver, playings its second game in as many nights, outshot the Flyers, 44-27.
"I thought we played our asses off," Canucks coach John Tortorella said.
It was a strange night: The winning coach was unhappy with his team's performance, while the losing coach was pleased with his club's effort.
Lecavalier strikes. For the second time this season, Vinny Lecavalier gave the Flyers a win with a shootout goal. He also did it in Nashville on Nov. 30.
Moving in a deliberate fashion, Lecavalier made a series of pretty moves and went forehand-backhand-forehand to beat goalie Eddie Lack. It was the only goal of the shootout.
“I never played against him, so I wasn’t quite sure (how to beat him),” Lecavalier said. “I was trying to figure it out as I was going down the ice. I went back to what worked against Nashville. He’s a big guy, and I wasn’t sure if he was going be deep in his net or out, but he kind of came out for me to be able to deke him.”
The Flyers are 3-3 in shootouts this season, and the win gave them consecutive shootout victories for the second time in franchise history _ and the first time since 2006.
Breakaways. Claude Giroux was plus-3 and he had a goal and an assist, increasing his points streak to a career-best nine games, which is the NHL’s longest active streak….The line of Giroux, Michael Raffl (two assists) and Jake Voracek was a combined plus-7…..Voracek (nine games) and Wayne Simmonds (five) had their points streaks stopped….Ray Emery is expected to face the Flames…..Vancouver had its six-game home winning streak snapped.
Follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter @BroadStBull.