Rask appreciative of Thomas as friend, mentor

Rask appreciative of Thomas as friend, mentor
August 3, 2012, 2:34 am
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Tuukka Rask would probably qualify as Tim Thomas closest teammate on the current Bruins roster.
After all, they were goaltending partners over the last three seasons in Boston, and goalies tend to be a little removed from the rest of the players in your garden variety hockey dressing room.
But even Rask was surprised by Thomas decision to walk away from the Bruins and sit out the 2012-13 hockey season while living with his family on their new Colorado compound.
I was surprised and I wasnt. I wasnt expecting him to do that, obviously. But I really appreciate what hes done and his decision to be with his family while taking some time away from hockey, said Rask. It really didnt shock me that much. I am more sad to see him leave because we had a connection and a friendship going on. But Im sure hes happy where he is and that he gets to spend time with his family.
Everybody knew that he was tired because he had played a lot over the last couple of years, but it didnt seem like he was exhausted mentally or anything like that. It will be a little bit weird with him not sitting next to me, but Ill have to get used to it.
The surprise was tinged with a level of appreciation that Thomas unorthodox decision has opened the door for Rask to finally take over Bostons starting reigns. But one thing Rask and Thomas had never talked about was the outspoken goalies opinions about politics, lifestyles or pretty much anything outside the arena of hockey.
So Rask didnt have much of an opinion about any of Thomas politics.
I look at things a little differently because hes a friend of mine. I dont really care what he says on Facebook or whatever. We dont talk about that kind of stuff and hes always been good to me. I had been home for two or three days in Finland when Thomas decided to take the year off and somebody called me about it, said Rask. It takes the excitement out of it for you guys in the media. There was always this controversy going around thats gone now, but maybe it will be between me and Anton Khudobin next year. Who knows?
Everybody wants to start. If he steps back and takes a look at his situation and then comes back, then he comes back. But I just need to go out and do whatever I can like always.
The Finnish goalie said he hasnt contacted Thomas because his cell phone wasnt working in Finland, but that hed be reaching out to his puck-stopping mentor in the next few days.