A familiar face behind the mask comes back to Preds as backup

Sunday, July 1, 2012 at 4:00pm

Chris Mason pretty much has done it all for the Nashville Predators.

That is why general manager David Poile has no doubt the veteran goalie can fill the bill as Pekka Rinne’s backup.

The Predators, according to TSN.ca, signed the free agent goalie to a one-year, $1.25 million contract Sunday, the first day of the NHL’s new contract year.

Mason played 135 games in two previous stints with Nashville.

He went 16-9-2-3 in two seasons as Tomas Vokoun’s backup (2003-04 and 2005-06).  He was the starter in the 2006 playoffs, when Vokoun was sidelined due to treatment of bood clots. The next two seasons he split time almost evenly, first with Vokoun and then with Dan Ellis.

Nashville traded him to St. Louis for a fourth-round pick in the 2008 draft. That pick later went to the New York Rangers in a separate deal. He spent two years with the Blues and the last two with the Atlanta/Winnipeg franchise.

Mason, 36, is 136-106-31 all-time, including 58-43-24 with Nashville. He replaces 24-year-old Anders Lindback, who was traded last month to the Tampa Bay Lightning.