By Ed Benkin
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Steve Mason will once again be a spectator as the Flyers and Rangers play Game 3 of their playoff series Tuesday night. The Flyers know the other spectators in the building will do their part.
The players are looking forward to playing in front of the home crowd after splitting two games in New York. Claude Giroux talked about the advantage he and his teammates have playing in front of the Flyers faithful at the Wells Fargo Center.
“Playing at home is going to be a different story,” said Giroux. “We all know how the fans are here. They’re going to give us a boost.”
Mason will be forced to join the crowd of onlookers for Game 3 as he remains sidelined with an undisclosed injury. Mason says he continues to make progress, but admits the strong play of Ray Emery has allowed him to take his time with his recovery.
“We’re getting closer and closer to 100% every day,” Mason said. “I just look forward to seeing how I’m feeling and getting ready for Friday (Game 4). The way Razor’s playing, there’s no hurry.”
Emery is no stranger to the playoff spotlight. In 2007, Emery backstopped the Ottawa Senators to the Stanley Cup Finals. The veteran says he’s enjoying his opportunity.
“I’m always excited to play,” said Emery. “It’s the best time of the year. It’s been a while since I’ve gotten to play in a playoff series. I really appreciate being in it.”
Emery is also excited to play at home, where the atmosphere is expected to be electric Tuesday night. Vincent Lecavalier will play his first playoff game in Philadelphia as a Flyer after experiencing what life was like for an opposing player with the Tampa Bay Lightning ten years ago.
“I remember coming in here with everybody in orange,” Lacavalier said. “It’s definitely one of the highlights in the playoff run that we had. Now, it’s definitely better when you’re on the same team.”
Game 3 will face off just after 8pm Tuesday night.