(The Philadelphia Flyers open their NHL season tonight at home against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Staff writer John Russo takes a look at the team's goaltender situation.)

Position: Goaltending

The Flyers hunt for a franchise goaltender continues this season. Ilya Bryzgalov was bought-out during the offseason and is still looking for a job. His departure opened the door for Steve Mason and Ray Emery, who are both on one-year tryouts to prove they can be starters in the NHL.

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The Starter

Steve Mason (2012 stats 4-2-0, 2.59 goals against average, .916 save percentage last season): Mason, 25, played in 20 games last season with the Blue Jackets and Flyers.

After being acquired by Philadelphia, Mason went 4-2-0 with a .944 save percentage and 1.90 GAA in seven games. It was a small sample size, but the former Calder Trophy (top rookie in 2008-09) is hoping a change of scenery will revive a career that has looked lost the last three seasons.

The Backup

Ray Emery (17-1-0, 1.94 GAA, .922 SV%): The Chicago Blackhawks were an unstoppable force last season. Despite being Corey Crawford's backup, the 31-year-old Emery was a big part of that season.

A lot of that can be attributed to Chicago's stout defense, but Emery's play went unnoticed as he has officially bounced back from a career-threatening hip disease that ended his 2009-10 season in Philadelphia.

John Russo


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