With new hat, Mason sets about settling in Thrashers goal

The first thing Chris Mason did after signing with the Thrashers as a free agent was buy a piece of team merchandise.

A new hat was in order. The goaltender immediately put the lid on his shaved head after an on-ice workout last week with some of his new teammates at the Thrashers practice facility.

“You have to change your allegiance,” said Mason, who spent the past two seasons with St. Louis after stints with Nashville and Florida. The 34-year-old signed a two-year contract as an unrestricted free agent on July 1.

Mason took up temporary housing upon arriving in town early last season, eager to get to work and get to know his new teammates. Mason, who dresses in the stall once occupied by Johan Hedberg, is one of several key off-season acquisitions by the Thrashers.

“I think it takes a little time,” Mason said of getting acclimated to a new locker room. “There are a lot of us in the same situation. Basically, you have to come in and be yourself. Hockey guys are such good guys and it’s easy. Everybody so far as been great and welcoming and it’s easy to pretty easy to walk in. Everyone makes you feel so comfortable that it’s not to difficult. With a lot of us being on the same path it will be easy and guys will click and get to know each other.”

Mason said he is looking forward to getting the season started. The sooner it starts, the sooner he and teammates can set about changing the fortunes of a franchise that has made the playoffs once in its history and has yet to win a postseason game.

“I think for everybody it’s a challenge,” Mason said. “You want to break that ground. You want to establish a team that’s taken seriously. Last year, I think they made good strides. They were in the playoff hunt until the last little bit. That’s really important. It’s a challenge. I think everybody has to take it personal to get this team where it wants to be – get into the playoffs and win. For me, personally, you take it as a challenge to help this team move forward and make the playoffs.”

Along with new teammates, Mason will be getting to know a new coaching staff. He is already quite familiar with one – goaltending consultant Clint Malarchuk. Mason played for the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage while in the Panthers system and Malarchuk was the goaltender coach. Mason welcomes the reunion – and the extra set of eyes.

“If you have a goalie coach, it’s another set of eyes that specializes in that position,” Mason said. “When they know your game, they can see when you are off a little bit – just little things that they can see that you may not notice when you are out there playing. He’s kind of the eye in the sky. We usually watch video together and go over games. It’s good to have another set of eyes and ears. I know Clint and he’s such a good guy and he can relate to the ups and downs that goalies go through. I’m really excited that he’s here.”

Mason and Ondrej Pavelec will be the Thrashers goaltending tandem next season. Once training camp starts next month the other four goalies under contract will be on the ice.

“I’ve already talked to Pavs quite a bit,” Mason said. “I’m looking forward to playing with him. He’s a really nice guy. I just enjoy being friends with all the guys. I love talking to goalies, young and old. I love the position. I love watching guys. I’m just going to be myself and get to know the guys. By all means, if they have anything they want to ask me. I’ll be asking them questions because I love to learn. There are always new techniques that guys are bringing into the game. I want to have good relationships with all of them.”

* I’m planning to be at IceForum on Thursday to catch up with some other players that have reported for voluntary workouts. I’ll see if there is any news and we’ll gather some more blog fodder. I don’t think any of the former Blackhawks are there yet, but let me know if there is anyone in particular you would like to hear from.

88 comments Add your comment

For The Record

August 25th, 2010
8:22 am

First…That’s all I got to say.

Todd

August 25th, 2010
8:22 am

When does training camp start?

kracker

August 25th, 2010
8:30 am

How much does a Bronze Medal pay??

For The Record

August 25th, 2010
8:42 am

It may be worth a signed Chelios practice puck…I hear they’re quite rare this year.

According to Ben Wright, he posted on BB yesterday that training camp is “still more than 3 weeks away”. Others are guestimating that it starts on or near Sept 17th/18th when they report for physicals. Haven’t seen an official announcement yet.

J.B.

August 25th, 2010
8:54 am

jeez, don’t you think they would’ve just given him a hat if he asked for one?

kracker

August 25th, 2010
9:19 am

For The Record, I don’t know the exact date of camp beginning but I read the rookies will report about one week before the main camp starts.

kracker

August 25th, 2010
9:20 am

And, BTW, I would love a signed Chelios practice puck!

Zombie Steve

August 25th, 2010
9:25 am

*sniff* *sniff*

…..I smell the odoriferous odor of troll feces

J.B.

August 25th, 2010
9:30 am

i have a practice puck signed by chelios from last season. not a game worn jersey or anything, but im sure glad i got it.

atlantic/central is the worst troll i’ve ever seen. it’s amusing in a Lucas tries to play football kind of way…

kracker

August 25th, 2010
9:39 am

Apparently the trolls’ teams can’t hold their interest thru a summer so they are on other teams’ blogs to pass their dismal life.

J.B.

August 25th, 2010
9:41 am

i didn’t say you were wrong. I insinuated you are pathetic and it amuses me.

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
9:42 am

jeez, don’t you think they would’ve just given him a hat if he asked for one?

They probably only give them the adjustable hats… if you want a fitted hat, you have to buy it yourself. ;)

Darkhorse

August 25th, 2010
9:42 am

Just like you’re nothing life huh?

“a nothing team!”-You could make that argument about half the franchises in the league right now, including plenty in the North that should be drawing better than they are.

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
9:45 am

Ah, looks like the Twitter Trolls have stumbled in… the downside of having so many followers for Viv.

How about you Twitter Twits go back to Twittling your momma’s Tw@t?

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
9:46 am

Adams… and your team is?

DWTOO

August 25th, 2010
9:59 am

Dear Trolls – Please go the Thrashers section on HF Boards. Look for the line for fans of other teams. It will answer most, if not all of your questions. We know what he have and would like to have better, but, this is the hand we’ve been dealt. This is our team, we cheer for them, hope they improve. In the meantime we’ll keep cheering.

Now you can return to your Mama’s basement and talk to our pal Sage.

Zombie Steve

August 25th, 2010
10:00 am

He’s probably a smarmy Rangers fan

Zombie Steve

August 25th, 2010
10:00 am

Mad that we dumped Todd White on them =)

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
10:12 am

Clearly not the thrashers or blue jackets since they are the only teams in the league that haven’t won any playoff games in their franchises’ history!
My team also has multiple championships, something the trashers will never sniff!

Clearly you’re very proud of your team that you can’t mention them.

Flames

August 25th, 2010
10:12 am

Just ignore these idiots….This will be our year!!!! They said the same thing about the Blackhawks until last year. The Thrashers are putting together a Team that we will all be proud of. We will make the playoffs and we will advance in the playoffs. This is going to be the year that this organization will turns things around. Carolina did it, Tampa Bay did it, Florida made it to the finals. It’s now our turn. Most of us can agree that this team is headed in the right direction..When the 2010-2011 Season is over, we will be all proud of our team….GO THRASHERS!

cousin Eddie

August 25th, 2010
10:21 am

What team does the troll support? Then we might have a better idea of his greatness.

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
10:31 am

Adams… Smythe… I guess we’ll be hearing from Norris next.

smokemonster

August 25th, 2010
10:35 am

Chris who? what a lame story about a Nobody who wont make one damn difference to the Thrashers.

smokemonster

August 25th, 2010
10:39 am

People who are sick of the Thrasher’s BS aren’t trolls, they are simply sick of hearing the same old story from this pathetic organization.

Thrashers wont make the playoffs 2010-2011. Just like I predicated last year.

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
10:43 am

All these different names… you could have just used ‘Fag’… it’s more accurate and less letters. You could save your wrist for your boyfriend.

Flames

August 25th, 2010
10:45 am

GaVaHokie- Now that is funny!

Brendan

August 25th, 2010
10:45 am

I think there’s a way to avoid ’sugarcoating’ things without being a troll. There’s a marked difference. And some posters haven’t mastered that yet.

cousin Eddie

August 25th, 2010
10:49 am

I think each hand has it’s on personality, hell maybe even two. That’s what happens when your in mom’s basement and nothing to do.

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
11:02 am

If you’re going to troll, at least be funny… that’s all I ask.

Troll Alert

August 25th, 2010
11:04 am

Looks like the bonehead of bud is back.

DWTOO

August 25th, 2010
11:06 am

Beginning to miss Sage. This troll is truly a tool.

SomaAtl95

August 25th, 2010
11:17 am

How important you must feel to trash a team on a newspaper blog. Maybe if you could get it up and be a real man you could either state your team and give the people here an honest chance to retort or you can continue to be a complete A$$HOLE and act like a spoiled little child. Take a viagra, put on your “big boy” pants and either go back to your dark corner and whack it to your “superior” yet unmentioned team or post your childish comments on your own teams blogs.

How bout you jump off the bridge you are on, Mr childish troll, and do the world a favor.

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
11:19 am

I am being hilarious, making fun of the thrashers is a comedy goldmine, and the gift that keeps on giving!

Clozapine is also the gift that keeps on giving.

DWTOO

August 25th, 2010
11:22 am

Cuz Eddie – The joke’s old, but, then so am I. Hopefully you’ll live this long.

Duder – If you don’t like the Thrasher jersey use your hands or better your lips.

trolls mother

August 25th, 2010
11:28 am

Sorry you have to endure my 13 year old son’s trash talk. He never comes out the basement anymore due to the hair growing on his palms and his enormous forearm muscles. We tried to shave the hands but then he ran around with oven mitts on for 4 days and drew little faces on the oven mitts and began calling them names like Northeastern, Central, and Smokemonster. I can understand calling it Smokemonster because of how much he uses it, but the other ones I don’t understand. Anyways, we are working with a psychologist to fix his abnormalities and we just bought a special jacket that keeps his hands out of his pants. Please pray for us.

GaVaHokie

August 25th, 2010
11:33 am

I can understand calling it Smokemonster because of how much he uses it, but the other ones I don’t understand.

See? That’s what I’m talking about… that’s comedy! :)

Jack

August 25th, 2010
11:36 am

Chris time to go to ajc’s it department and ask them why the Troll filter is not working.

SomaAtl95

August 25th, 2010
11:44 am

(F)or the life of me I can’t (U)nderstand why this (C)hildish troll gets (K)icks out of slamming the Thrashers when there are other teams that have (Y)ears long records (O)f (U)tter mediocrity.
They are:
Los Angeles (1967) – 1 trip to the Finals (93)
St. Louis (1967) – 3 trips to the finals (68, 69, 70)
Buffalo (1970) – 2 trips to the finals (75, 99)
Vancouver (1970) – 2 trips to the finals (81, 94)
Washington (1974) – 1 trip to the finals (98)
Phoenix (1979)
San Jose (1991)
Ottawa (1992) – 1 trip to the finals (07)
Florida (1993) – 1 trip to the finals (96)
Nashville (1998)
Atlanta (1999)
Columbus (2000)
Minnesota (2000)
What team are you a fairweather fan of? Can’t be any of these.

Thrashers27

August 25th, 2010
11:45 am

Alright…who left the gate open on the douchebag cage? Come on fess up and help corrale them all back into their home. Once back in their cage they don’t feel the need to disrupt our hockey peace.

Oh, and hey douchebags…you do realize that most of the folks who post here are fans of hockey just like you douchebags are and the vast majority of us fans of the game are from the north. No matter where a fan is from, or currently resides, they’re still a fan of the greatest game ever…douchebags.

Zombie Steve

August 25th, 2010
11:49 am

Patrick – you’re obviously to thick headed to see that we saved money by taking that dinosaur Brashshear and giving you morons Todd white (we bought Brashear out and sent him packing).

Make fun of us all you want while you can. This “awful” team is going to dominate the twinkle-toed Rangers this season.

rob

August 25th, 2010
11:50 am

Obviously another person who tried to get close to Waddell and was rejected. Pathetic actually but whatever. He only has one thing to say and it’s neither original or insightful. Maybe he’s a Winnepeg fan, pining longingly for “Canada’s sport” to return back to the homeland.

Darkhorse

August 25th, 2010
11:51 am

Troll-Go home to your wife, girlfriend or mom tonight and be sure and show them how hard you worked today and what articulate fodder you produced. I’m sure they will be so proud of what you accomplished when you show them. Tell them you feel so good about your self-accomplishments in life to date, and what a big boy you are now. For that matter, man up and show everyone you work with how productive you’ve been on company time.

Stop hiding behind the big old internet, go take your inferiority complex you obviously have and call that doctor you’ve been meaning to.

trolls mother

August 25th, 2010
11:52 am

Now that I’m down here in the basement, I see where all my oven mitts went and found the mop that went missing. It also smells horrible down here. Tissue boxes everywhere, empty Jergens lotion bottles piled up in the corner underneath a Gary Bettman poster which I might add has been defaced with a sharpie. I found all my over-65 swimsuit catalogs too. There is no telling what else is down here. I am missing my Golden Girls calender, hell it might be down here. I’ll keep looking.

JG

August 25th, 2010
12:00 pm

Let’s hear from Dustin please….

Chris Vivlamore

August 25th, 2010
12:00 pm

TROLL GONE. Took a break from the vacation honey-do list to eliminate the dunce. Sorry folks. He should know it takes two seconds to see – and ban – the IP address. Rawhide has banned him also. His comments have been eliminated. We move on. Thanks a lot.

cousin Eddie

August 25th, 2010
12:04 pm

This felt like when the teacher left the classroom for a minute and then chaos set in. Then teacher returns and restores order.

schroeder

August 25th, 2010
12:27 pm

Thanks for restoring order CV,great piece on Mason. If attitude and hard work equal wins,I think Dudley hit a homerun w/Mason.I liked his work in St Louis, pretty good fundamentals,positioning, above average glove.Didn’t see too many “soft ones”. I can only wait and hope that Dudley has something up his sleeve in regards to a trade for a top 6 forward,maybe one of the busload of d-men we have stockpiled this summer. Now we invite McLaren to camp? I hope the front office booked enough rooms at the hotels in Duluth for all the defensemen.

Jack

August 25th, 2010
12:31 pm

thanks Chris sorry the dunce interupted your vacation. You should only be interupted when we sign Elias. :)

kracker

August 25th, 2010
12:33 pm

Good job, Chris and Rawhide. “Troll be gone!” Gandolf couldn’t have done any better :)

Cliff Fletcher

August 25th, 2010
12:34 pm

The troll has been flushed, he makes me feel so smart.