The Philadelphia Flyers are already facing an uphill battle, down 1-0 in a series against the regular season’s best team and one of the most loaded offensive lineups in the postseason. The Washington Capitals really don’t need help when it comes to scoring goals, but they got an assist via an unconscionable gaffe by Flyers goalie Steve Mason.
In the second period, with the Flyers already trailing 1-0, Capitals forward Jason Chimera redirected a puck in an effort to simply dump it down the ice. He wasn’t even facing the Flyers net when he deflected the puck and actually got hit as he did it. Chimera then got himself up and was about to go for a line change before the goal horn suddenly blared.
The puck slid on the ice, not even all that fast. Mason was there to play it as routinely as ever. But before the puck hit his stick, Mason shifted in the net. That opened up the space between his legs and in went the puck for an all-time terrible goal against.
No one has ever looked more confused celebrating a goal than Chimera after his teammates informed him he just made it a 2-0 game.
It should be noted that minutes before allowing that goal, Mason was shaken up and appeared to be in some discomfort after stretching to make a spectacular save on a John Carlson attempt. Perhaps there was still some lingering uneasiness after that. Here's a look at that play:
I tore my groin just making this GIF pic.twitter.com/UwxNZNYKWV— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) April 17, 2016
Going from a save like that to giving up the kind of goal he did is hard to even fathom. Even the Sportsnet broadcasters could not find the words for how bad a goal like that is, correcting themselves after saying that every goalie has done something like that. "Never at this level," Glenn Healy mused.
Mason had the net covered. All he had to do was wait, stop the puck and sweep it to a teammate and he moved in the exact wrong way to turn a harmless chip-in into a two-goal deficit.
We might not see another one like this in a long, long time.