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Reimer takes Maple Leafs' lack of deal in stride

by Mike Brophy /

TORONTO -- The Toronto Maple Leafs had an experienced goaltender on their shopping list at the NHL Trade Deadline. They didn't find the deal they were looking for.

James Reimer, now the No. 1 goalie for the Maple Leafs for the foreseeable future, spent his afternoon Wednesday -- trade deadline day -- shopping at the supermarket, stocking up on fresh fruits and vegetables. Just another day in the life of a youngster trying to establish himself as a starter in the NHL.

Steve Mason, on the other hand, was presented a new opportunity, having been traded to the Philadelphia Flyers by the Columbus Blue Jackets. The 24-year-old, who had 10 shutouts in his first NHL season and was the NHL's rookie of the year in 2008-09, joined a handful of his new teammates for the morning skate at Air Canada Centre on Thursday. He is expected to back up starter Ilya Bryzgalov on Thursday when the Flyers play the Maple Leafs.

Reimer has dealt with the rumors that the Maple Leafs were searching for an upgrade in net and said he was not bothered by all the chatter. In fact, had the Maple Leafs acquired a veteran at the deadline, Reimer vowed he would have done his best to observe and learn from his new teammate.

"I wasn't too worried about it and I'm glad I wasn't because I would have wasted a couple of good days," he said. "I went to the grocery store, bought some groceries, and by the time I got home the deadline was over. It was a pretty normal day."

Still, there must be a sense of relief that he now will be the team's No. 1 goalie.

"Yes, but I don't really want to get too caught up in this and that," Reimer said. "I just want to play my game, focus on being good every day. Starting today I wanted to have a good practice and get ready for tonight. I don't know if you want to waste your time and effort getting caught up in who is No. 1 and who is starting. You work for it, but as soon as you start giving yourself a pat on the back, things go down."

Mason said he welcomes his new situation. His career certainly has hit some speed bumps since his banner rookie season, but he believes better days are ahead.

"I'm here to become the goaltender that I know I can be," Mason said. "I'm really looking forward to this opportunity with a great organization. I had heard some rumblings that I might be moved, so I was ready for it. This is something that I have been looking forward to and now that I'm here I'm going to take advantage of the opportunity."

Here are how the lineups project for the game Thursday between the Flyers and Maple Leafs:


James van Riemsdyk - Tyler Bozak - Phil Kessel

Joffrey Lupul - Nazem Kadri - Nikolai Kulemin

Jay McClement - Mikhail Grabovski - Matt Frattin

Leo Komarov - Joe Colborne - Colton Orr

Carl Gunnarsson - Dion Phaneuf

John-Michael Liles - Michael Kostka

Mark Fraser - Cody Franson

James Reimer

Ben Scrivens

Scratched: Jake Gardiner

Injured: Leo Komarov (upper body), Frazer McLaren (flu), Clarke MacArthur (upper body)


Matt Read - Claude Giroux - Jakub Voracek

Scott Hartnell - Brayden Schenn - Wayne Simmonds

Tye McGinn - Sean Couturier - Jay Rosehill

Simon Gagne - Ruslan Fedotenko - Mike Knuble

Luke Schenn - Oliver Lauridsen

Kimmo Timonen - Bruno Gervais

Erik Gustafsson - Kent Huskins

Ilya Bryzgalov

Steve Mason

Injured: Zac Rinaldo (lower body), Nicklas Grossmann (upper body), Braydon Coburn (shoulder), Maxime Talbot (broken leg), Andrej Meszaros (shoulder)

Scratched: Kurtis Foster

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