Goaltender Change in Boston?
So far this season the Bruins have been inconsistent. That doesn’t come as a surprise to many due to the youth of this team. The Bruins had won four straight, their longest winning streak of the season until Sunday’s loss to Edmonton. The surprising thing is the main reason behind their longest winning streak of the season is due to their backup goalie, Anton Khudobin. The Bruins’ number one goaltender Tuukka Rask has gotten off to a rough start. If he does not improve his play, then there could be a new number one goaltender in Boston.
Photo Credit: Fluto Shinzawa
Rask’s Rough Start
On Sunday night Rask had an opportunity to make his case and he didn’t capitalize. With the play of Khudobin, some have started to say Rask may lose his job. Rask has often been criticized heavily in Boston and this year his numbers don’t help his case. After Sunday’s game Rask now has just three wins and nine losses in twelve starts this season. He is giving up almost three goals a game and has yet to record a shootout. Last year he recorded a career high of eight. So far this season he ranks near the bottom in most goaltender statistics while Khudobin ranks near the top. It is not impossible for Rask to get on a role and carry this team, but time may be running out.
Photo Credit: Harry How/ Reuters
The Bruins have many young players on their roster. So far this season these players have at times made mistakes in front of Rask leading to goals. Rask has carried the Bruins in the past by stealing games. This year he hasn’t come up with those big saves nearly as much. That is where Khudobin has excelled and is why the Bruins have won with him in net. if Tuukka can start to make the difficult saves than his results may change and the Bruins could rise in the standings.
Photo Credit: Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press via AP
This season is Bruce Cassidy’s first full season as the Bruins head coach. Early he’s made it clear that paychecks don’t matter but performance will dictate who plays. If Rask wants to remain the starter then he will have to play better. Rask has been the Bruins number one goaltender for the past six years. He’s won a Vezina and almost carried the Bruins to a championship in 2011. Rask has been one of the best goaltenders in the league at times throughout his career. With his job on the line it’s time for Rask to remind people of the player he is.