Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask has for years been a lightning rod for fans and media alike. One thing no one can debate or argue, however, is how good the veteran has been in recently. It’s no coincidence that some of Rask’s best seasons have come with a more managed workload.
Rask, no doubt the Bruins starter, has been better later in seasons as a result of tandem setups. He and Anton Khudobin were strong for a few seasons before Khudobin signed in Dallas. When that happened, GM Don Sweeney signed veteran Jaroslav Halak. It’s been the NHL’s best duo ever since.
Rask, who had his best playoff run in the spring of 2019, credits that plan. Why? For keeping him fresh and at the top of his game.
“We’ve had the plan in place for a few years now that we don’t want me playing 60, 70 games,” Rask said. “I think that, I think if you look at my career probably I’ve played my best when there’s been a 1A/1B situation, and both goalies have got playing time and you’re fresh going into the playoffs.”
Tuukka Rask was stellar last spring, posting a .934 save percentage in 24 games. He was a big reason why the Bruins found themselves in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. He played just 46 games during the 2018-19 season.
“It’s worked well for me personally, and also from the team’s perspective. I think it’s been very beneficial,” Rask continued. The Bruins, who won the Eastern Conference last season, were the top team in the NHL when the league went on a pause due to COVID-19 two months ago.
Not only is Rask happy to have a competent 1A/1B goaltender back in the fold, he’s happy to have a friend back in the locker room.
“Jaro texted me last week and told me he signed, and I couldn’t be happier. It’ll be fun with him for another year, we get along super well.”