Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Anxious Atlanta players in limbo awaiting word

  • Print

NO one is more anxious to officially learn the fate of the Atlanta Thrashers than members of the team.

The players have been given no indication one way or the other where they'll be playing home games next season, according to goaltender Chris Mason.

"They're not going to include us in any of the stuff and we shouldn't be either," Mason said Friday from his off-season home in Red Deer, Alta. "We'll know probably the same time or after everybody else knows, that's the way it goes.

"We're sitting on the edge of our seats waiting to see what's going to happen, too."

While one agent indicated that some Thrashers have been quietly told to make new real estate plans, Mason hasn't heard anything.

The 35-year-old signed a two-year lease on a place after agreeing to a contract of that length with the Thrashers last summer. He's played in six different cities during his pro career and is facing the possibility of moving once again.

"That's one of the very few things that is tough about the job," said Mason. "I'm fortunate enough to be playing hockey and that's one of the things that you just have to deal with. It's happened throughout a hockey player's career and that's just the way it goes.

"We've done it before, we'll do it again."

The prospect of potentially seeing the franchise move from Atlanta to Winnipeg has him divided. On one hand, Mason feels bad about the fans and team employees that would be left behind in Atlanta but it would also give him a chance to live out a dream.

"There's definitely things that would be really cool about it," said Mason. "Playing in Canada, for me, it's something I've always wanted to do. It would be really cool.

"Just playing in front of a packed house every night would be awesome."

The Thrashers were 28th out of the 30-team league in attendance last season, averaging just 13,469.

Playing under a new coach in Craig Ramsay and with a number of new players, Atlanta had a promising start to last season. However, a 6-15-5 swoon in the middle of the schedule doomed them to another year outside of the playoffs.

"Last year was just such a weird dynamic," said Mason. "You had the biggest turnover I've ever seen in a long time with players, you had a new general manager (Rick Dudley), new coaches. It was like a completely new team...

"I think moving forward this year everybody knows each other and I think it's going to be a lot different."

Mason played American Hockey League games in the old Winnipeg Arena early in his pro career and has some good friends in the city, but hasn't started making any plans to settle there just yet.

 

-- The Canadian Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 21, 2011 C2

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Faron Hall honoured by Mayor Sam Katz - May 6, 2009

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Goslings enjoy Fridays warm weather to soak up some sun and gobble some grass on Heckla Ave in Winnipeg Friday afternoon- See Bryksa’s 30 DAY goose challenge - May 18, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Local- A large osprey lands in it's nest in a hydro pole on Hyw 59  near the Hillside Beach turnoff turn off. Osprey a large narrow winged hawk which can have a wingspan of over 54 inches are making a incredible recovery since pesticide use of the 1950's and  1960's- For the last two decades these fish hawks have been reappearing in the Lake Winnipeg area- Aug 03, 2005

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who has been the Bombers MVP so far this season?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google