Tuukka Rask is back in Boston.

Tuukka Rask is again in Boston.
Picture: Getty Pictures

It’s cute, if not scrumptious, that Tuukka Rask’s imminent return to the Boston Bruins is being greeted as one thing of the cavalry arriving. As a result of Bruins followers (and media) have by no means hesitated to throw no matter obtainable cutlery was round at Tuke Nuke ‘Em each spring as a result of he wasn’t Tim Thomas, when the Bruins would spit it. Rask is inches away from successful two Cups (Chara hitting the submit in 2OT in Sport 1 within the ‘13 Remaining, shedding Sport 7 at house in ‘19), however for many of his profession he’s been on the high of the record as to why the Bruins aren’t parading down Causeway St. come June — regardless of how mistaken it often was.

The factor is, Rask’s Bruins groups all fell at some hurdle for a similar motive as those the Bruins are barely clinging on to a wildcard spot now. Rask couldn’t remedy the issues from the crease then, and he can’t remedy them returning to it now. Perhaps if he may persuade David Krejčí to hitch him…

That return would additionally doubtless not propel the Bruins to the highest of the Jap Convention, as a result of their downside isn’t goaltending, or at the least it’s removed from their greatest fault. The Bruins are sixth within the league in targets towards at 2.59 and seventeenth within the league at even-strength save-percentage, however thirteenth in total save-percentage due to some glorious work on the penalty kill. And if there’s one workforce that doesn’t require elite goaltending to win, it’s the Bruins. Boston has had a convention of being a puck-dominant, defensively ridiculous workforce.

That’s no totally different now. The Bruins are the one workforce giving up lower than two anticipated targets per 60 minutes of even-strength time (per NaturalStatTrick.com). They offer up subsequent to nothing.

If there’s one criticism of the Bruins goaltending duo of Linus Ullmark and Jeremy Swayman, it’s that they don’t make the saves they shouldn’t make, even when they make virtually the entire saves they need to. Swayman has a 3.0 targets saved above anticipated in 15 appearances, and Linus Ullmark is at -0.2 (for reference, the chief on this class is Toronto’s Jack Campbell at 19.2). However once more, there’s no workforce that requires “the large save” lower than the Bruins.

Rask definitely gained’t cripple the Bruins financially, as he’s prone to signal for the minimal. That ought to go away the Bs some cap house to handle their greater downside, the issue they’ve had for years, getting anybody to attain past their high line, which stays among the finest in hockey.

Even saying that, Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, and David Pastrnak haven’t scored at their ordinary price both. Pastrnak solely has 9 targets, due to a shooting-percentage that has cratered (7.3 % towards a profession mark of 13.7). Marchand is over some extent per recreation, however solely has 11 targets, as does Bergeron. All of those ought to rebound, as a result of it’s simply right down to luck. Pastrnak isn’t affected by an absence of possibilities or pictures, he simply can’t get something to go in. These pictures finally will.

However behind them, it’s icky. Taylor Corridor remains to be there, however he’s been let down from the Bruins try and make Charlie Coyle a No. 2 heart, which is akin to changing a busted tire with an precise donut. Coyle is ok as a bottom-six bum-slayer, however the Bs fell in love together with his 2019 playoff run which he was by no means going to copy. He has 16 factors on the 12 months.

These days, coach Bruce Cassidy has cut up up the Perfection Line to pair Pastrnak with Corridor, however they’ve been flanking Erik Haula, who’s a profession grinder and employee bee. If he’s in your high six, the home wants work. Nobody on the Bruins past the highest line has greater than eight targets. Then once more, whenever you signal skilled fuel leak Nick Foligno to just about $4 million for 2 years, perhaps you get what you deserve.

The Bruins don’t get a lot offensive assist from their blue line both. Charlie McAvoy, someway one of many league’s greatest two-way d-men although he at all times has the facial features of somebody who simply acquired punched within the balls, has 5 targets. Each different d-man has 12 mixed.

Once more, as a result of Rask is keen to play for nothing after making $60 million already, it gained’t actually handicap the Bruins in no matter their bids are to enhance their scoring. And if he ought to show to be previous it, the mix of Ullmark and Swayman have confirmed they are often shield the online behind the Bs stellar protection.

Nevertheless,none of that may do a lot for the Bruins path within the playoffs. They’ll nonetheless need to undergo some mixture of Florida, Tampa, and Toronto (although the latter gained’t maintain a lot worry for them, will it?). Swayman is simply 23, and his time will come in some unspecified time in the future if not this 12 months.

Nonetheless, you possibly can’t assist however snigger on the welcome mat Rask is getting, when up to now it was at all times a rail to hold him out of city, and the issues are all nonetheless the identical that he can’t do something about.


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