BEDFORD, Mass. -- Upon touching down at Hanscom Air Force Base late this morning, Bruins coach Claude Julien was asked about Tuukka Rask’s stonewalling play thus far in the Eastern Conference finals against the Pittsburgh Penguins, and if the playoffs are where goalies make a name for themselves.
“Our team is probably playing its best hockey right now, but so is Tuukka,” Julien said. “He’s been unbelievable so far in this series, and throughout the whole playoffs, but he really seems to have brought it up a notch in this series as well.”
The demons of 2010 -- when the upstart young Finn outdueled Vezina winner Ryan Miller in the first round, only to run out of gas the next round and surrender a 3-0 series lead for just the third time in NHL history -- are nowhere to be found. If his play as of late has suggested anything, it’s that this type of consistency is seeming to stick.
Since the Bruins’ wild 5-4 overtime comeback win over Toronto in Game 7 of the first round, Rask’s numbers have been eye-opening. He is 7-1 with a 1.77 goals-against average, one shutout and a ridiculous .938 save percentage.