It only took Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask three games back from the injured list to author a breathtaking “save of the year” candidate.
The Boston Bruins held a 1-0 lead in the first period against the Buffalo Sabres at the KeyBank Center on Tuesday night when the Sabres began applying a little pressure during a power play possession. Rask made a couple of consecutive saves on Rasmus Dahlin at the point and then on Rasmus Ristolainen at the front of the net on the rebound, and then managed to push toward the far post and make the glove save on a wide-open Dylan Cozens waiting with another rebound chance.
The puck had popped out to Cozens with the entire net to shoot at, but it was Rask refusing to give up on the play that turned out to be the key behind the highlight reel stop. He leaped across the crease to extend his glove hand and swallow up the shot that looked like it was going to be a sure goal for Cozens.
The save was simply jaw-dropping given how much real state Cozens had to shoot at in a vacant net before a hustling Rask seemingly came out of nowhere.
— Nick Alberga (@thegoldenmuzzy) April 20, 2021
And for those that would like to see the whole play develop, here you go.
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) April 20, 2021
The stunning stop was one of nine saves for Rask in the first period, who clearly appears to be over the lower back problems that forced him out of action for a month. Now in his third game back from being injured, it looks like Boston’s No. 1 goaltender is back on his game with a possible battle for Rask’s backup spot between Jaroslav Halak, now that he’s ready to practice and play again, and rookie Jeremy Swayman.
Rask won each of his first two games back from the injury and stopped 52-of-56 shots for a sparkling .929 save percentage as he appears to be on the ascension with less than a month until the Stanley Cup playoffs.