BRIGHTON, MA – It took a few days to get Boston Bruins goaltender Linus Ullmark’s take on his eventful Game 4 against the Florida Panthers, but it was worth the wait. Ullmark was not made available in the moments after Sunday afternoon’s Game 4 win in Florida as he was receiving treatment for whatever nagging injury he was playing through, so he talked on Tuesday about a game where he racked up an assist, a 10-minute misconduct for trying to fight Matthew Tkachuk in a major scuffle at the end of the game and made 41 sparking saves in a 6-2 win for the Boston Bruins that gave them a 3-to-1 lead in the playoff series. The real highlight for Ullmark and Boston Bruins alike was the No. 1 goalie leaving the game late in the third period after he’d whipped off his gloves and mask while challenging Matthew Tkachuk to a fight after bumping him one too many times in the crease.
Florida's Matthew Tkachuk tries to fight Boston's goalie Linus Ullmark, a breakdown pic.twitter.com/q33z1x9VWW
— Jomboy (@Jomboy_) April 26, 2023
Who knows? Perhaps it had something to do with Ullmark watching old videos of the fiery Tim Thomas during his 2011 Stanley Cup run in the weeks leading up to the end of the regular season while he was preparing for the playoffs.
Shades of 2011 Conn Smythe Tim Thomas w/Bruins goalie Linus Ullmark brawling w/Panthers players while looking unstoppable with 41 saves against the Panthers in a massive Game 4 win? Not a coincidence 🏒🐻🏆
Full clip on YouTube: https://t.co/hM63Vl1tpY
— Joe Haggerty (@HackswithHaggs) April 24, 2023
Ullmark couldn’t help but smile when asked if it was just another day at the office for him in what was undoubtedly his best playoff performance to date.
“It was a different kind of day at the office, definitely. It was something special, but you’re only as good as your last game. It’s just playoffs. Everybody is playing physical out there. I am just a part of the game as well. There will be guys crashing the net a little harder, trying to whack pucks out of your gloves or trying to cause mayhem and get those dirty goals. It’s nothing new.
“It’s not something I’m actively seeking out, especially late in games like that,” said Ullmark, who now has a 3-1-0 record with a 2.55 goals against average and .925 save percentage in these playoffs. “If it was a 3-2 game I wouldn’t have done anything, but it was a 5-2 game so it had a little different feeling to it I would say. It’s been mostly positive [from my teammates]. There was not a lot of confusion, but I would say surprise as well. It’s the first time a lot of them have seen me drop the gloves, and it’s the first time [I’ve done it] in my career. My job is to stop pucks and not do stuff like that, obviously.”
Ullmark said he had to make a phone call to his mom back in Sweden to explain what happened as it was pretty out of character for the normally calm cool and collected netminder.
“The call from my mom was the first one where she asked what happened,” said Ullmark, with a smile on his face. “She hasn’t seen me like that. I spoke the truth to her. You can’t like to mom.”
Ullmark will unquestionably be going in Game 5 with the Boston Bruins holding a stranglehold on the Florida Panthers in their first round series, and the Vezina Trophy favorite seems ready for whatever the Panthers will throw at him in a sure-to-be-intense elimination game on Wednesday night.