Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Steve Mason is shown in this photo. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Paul Sancya
NEW YORK - Steve Mason has earned a pretty tough assignment for the NHL's YoungStars Game.
He'll be in goal for the rookie team against a sophomore squad that has plenty of scoring talent.
Nicklas Backstrom, Devin Setoguchi and Bryan Little headline the sophomore team for the three-on-three matchup that will be played Jan. 24 in Montreal - the day before the all-star game.
The YoungStars Game should be a wide-open affair, making the job tough for Mason and sophomore goalie Erik Ersberg.
The rookie team is anchored by a pair of 19-year-old defencemen - Luke Schenn and Drew Doughty - and will be led by forwards Kris Versteeg, Blake Wheeler and Patrik Berglund.
Also earning forward spots for the freshman are James Neal, Michael Frolik, Mikkel Boedker and Steven Stamkos.
The sophomore blue-line will be patrolled by Marc Staal and Kris Letang, while Andrew Cogliano, Milan Lucic, Brandon Dubinsky and Mason Raymond round out the forward unit.
This will be the sixth YoungStars Game, but the first using the rookie-sophomore format.