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Steve Mason Injured, University Of Michigan's Shawn Hunwick Signed By Blue Jackets As Emergency Backup

The Columbus Blue Jackets has had a pretty awful season by anyone's standards, and it's not getting any easier as the season progresses. With under two weeks remaining, the Blue Jackets are set to be without starting goalie Steve Mason for at least one game. Bob McKenzie of TSN reports that Mason is out after taking a puck to the head Wednesday morning.

Presumably, that means that Allen York will get the start in goal, but what about York's backup? That falls to Shawn Hunwick, who is less-than a week removed from his career with the University of Michigan, which wrapped up on Friday with an NCAA Tournament loss. Hunwick was a walk-on, and doesn't have to go through the draft, and has been signed to an amateur tryout contract.

This means that he's in Columbus for one night as the backup as the Blue Jackets take on the Detroit Red Wings, but if Mason's injury is serious, it's feasible that he could be signed for further time to close out the season. It's worth noting that Mason wasn't pegged as someone who would be getting to the NHL any time soon, mostly due to his prohibitive size for the position - he's considered to be on the small side.

That doesn't mean he's not one injury away from playing in an NHL game less-than a week out of college. Injuries got him the starting nod at Michigan twice, so he's no stranger to these kinds of situations. It will be interesting to see if he sees the ice at all before the season is up, and whether or not he sticks with the Blue Jackets after the season.

For more on the Columbus Blue Jackets, go to The Cannon. You can also head over to SB Nation's main NHL hub at SBNation.com/NHL.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.