The last time these two teams met on Nov. 3, the Thrashers demonstrated absolutely no defense at all, allowing 55 shots on goal. Luckily for them, Chris Mason stopped 52 of them and the team managed to squeak out a win, 4-3. Unfortunately, things have not gone well for Chris Mason since then, getting pulled in his last two starts and allowing more than just the one usual softie a game. Ondrej Pavelec, however, is en fuego. Compare:
|2010 - Chris Mason||13||677||6||5||44||3.90||428||384||.897||0|
|2010 - Ondrej Pavelec||8||379||1||3||15||2.37||203||188||.926||0|
Obviously, Pavelec is our starter as of right now, and will be the starter for tonight's game. However, when you look at Mason's stats, the thing that stands out the most is the fact that his save percentage is almost at .900. That is how many shots he's facing - he's faced well more than twice than Pavelec so far this season. Maybe the poor guy is just shell shocked.
The Thrashers haven't won two in a row since Oct. 29, but they have managed to lose two in a row. The team dropped both decisions this past weekend, losing to the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-2 and the Washington Capitals 6-4 on back-to-back days. Tonight would be a decent chance to get started on a new winning streak, but the Thrashers have won just three games at home so far this season.
Lines for tonight are the same as for Sunday, with Slater moving to right wing to fill in for the still injured Freddy Modin. Eric Boulton is a go. No, Freddy Meyer is not playing offense today, and it's probable he's not playing defense, either. All the defensive pairings are playing sharply enough that it's going to be a problem for him to work his way into the lineup.
The reason that Atlanta has issues against Florida, Tomas Vokoun, will be in net tonight for the Panthers.