Hockey

Jackets admit goalie Mason needs a rest

The Columbus Blue Jackets have put rookie goaltender Steve Mason on injured reserve retroactive to Feb. 4 because he has been sidelined with a viral infection.

Rookie star put on injured reserve as suffering with mono for weeks

The Columbus Blue Jackets have put rookie goaltender Steve Mason on injured reserve, retroactive to Feb. 4, because he has been sidelined with a viral infection.

The 20-year-old starter was diagnosed with mononucleosis on Jan. 29, though the Columbus medical staff believe he'd had it for weeks.

Despite the diagnosis, Mason started Jan. 30, beating Ottawa 1-0, then was pulled from a loss to Dallas on the 31st and was in the whole way in a defeat at the hands of the St. Louis Blues on Feb. 3.

He and backup Wade Dubielewicz sat out the Blue Jackets' 3-2 overtime victory against San Jose on Saturday because of illness, and Dan LaCosta made his first NHL start.

Mason opened the season with Syracuse in the American Hockey League, but has shot to stardom in Columbus, leading the NHL with seven shutouts in 34 games.

He has a 2.09 goals-against average, ranking him second in the league, and a .923 save percentage.