The Flyers announced that backup goalie Ray Emery will start Game 1 against the Rangers Thursday in place of the injured Steve Mason. Cal Heeter will serve as backup.
"I don't think our team feels it's a blow at all," Flyers coach Craig Berube said.
Emery is 7-2 lifetime against the Rangers. The last time he faced them was in a 4-1 loss at Madison Square Garden on Jan. 12.
“You are always trying to be prepared, and stay healthy and ready and fill in when needed; that was mainly my goal this year," Emery said. "...I am really excited about it and feel that I can play well.”
Still, this is NOT how the Flyers wanted to start their playoff series against the New York Rangers.
Mason, who has an undisclosed injury, did not practice Wednesday. He will not make the trip to New York, though if he recovers, there is a chance he could join the team for Game 2 on Sunday.
“Listen. There’s injuries. Things happen," Berube said. "Good teams find a way to get it done.”
Emery allowed four goals in his only start against the Rangers this season. Before that, he was lights-out in his career against New York. In 10 career games against the Rangers, Emery is 7-2 (with a no-decision) and a 1.87 GAA and .936 save percentage.
Mason has been dominant against the Rangers this season: 2-1 with a 2.01 GAA and .937 save percentage.
The Flyers have lost eight straight in Madison Square Garden since 2011.