When it was reported that Tuukka Rask wasn’t going to play on Saturday in the biggest game of the year versus the NY Islanders due to a “Lower Body Injury” it brought back memories to all Bruins fans of last year when he could not go in the must win last game of the season versus Ottawa due to a “stomach bug”. And for that matter when he couldn’t go for Finland in the semi finals of the 2014 Olympics against Sweeden due to the “Flu”. Bagging on your team in three must win games due to stomach bugs, flu’s and treatments for LBI injuries is most certainly a pattern of behavior. In my opinion one of two things happend leading up to the Islander game – 1) due to his utter lack of competitiveness against the Lighting the game before Cassidy decided that he needed to take a seat but wanted to protect Tuukka and not throw blame his way so therefore the “Lower Body Injury” was thrown out there, by the way he miraculously recovered in time for practice today. 2) Tuukka has probably been dealing a lingering injury for some time like every player on the roster and when things didn’t go his way last week against Tampa and Ottawa specifically he turtled before the Islander game and once again couldn’t go. My opinion on this is the truth probably falls somewhere right in the middle…Tuukka didn’t want to go on Saturday and went to Cassidy with the LBI injury and based on what he saw from Tuukka the game before the coach was quick to give him a day off in an effort to shake things up and stop the teams four game skid.
Either way it is clear to me at this point that Tuukka is a really good goalie who lacks the compete level and killer instinct to be an elite goalie on a championship team. I also believe his teammates know that and it is a big part of the Bruins problem the last couple years. The team rallied in front of Khudobin against the Islanders and I would ride him until loses in an effort to pull out a different outcome than the last couple of seasons. Moving forward, it is time to really look at the DNA of this team and that starts with considering moving on from Rask.
I know a lot of Bruins fans will disagree with my thoughts on riding Khudobin until he loses and with the idea of moving on from Rask and I get the loyalty. However the definition of insanity is continuing to do the same thing and expecting a different result and I feel we are at that point with Tuukka.