The irony here is just laughable: The Flyers sign a goaltender for millions and millions of dollars, displacing a talented young netminder in the process. That talented young guy goes to Columbus via trade, becomes a No. 1 guy there, and then his backup is traded to Philadelphia a year later.
Mason won the Calder Trophy in 2009 as the NHL's rookie of the year. He has a ton of talent, but in recent years has completely fallen off the map. As Jonathan Willis pointed out, he's one of just two goalies to play 100 games over the the last four years and put up a save percentage under .900.
We still don't know exactly what the Flyers gave up here, but we can't imagine it's much. Pierre LeBrun reports it's a draft pick, but a contract needs to be cut because the Flyers are at the limit of 50. We'll see where that goes and reserve complete judgment until we know the full price.
Michael Leighton has been traded to Columbus in return, which is also sort of funny, and the Flyers have also given up a third round pick here. They're still at 50 contracts. That pick seems a little high for Mason, but there was apparently a bit of interest out there for him from other teams. Holmgren likely had to step it up to get him.
In the meantime, if the Flyers really didn't give up much, I don't hate the deal at all. It's a little awkward given the Sergei Bobrovsky situation, but Mason has potential and a fresh start might help. The big question, of course: How much does Mason get to play, and what the hell does this mean for Ilya Bryzgalov?