Rask wants to return to Boston


Rask wants to return to Boston

BOSTON -- Tuukka Rask is a free agent. Tim Thomas has one more year left on his current contract with the Bruins.

So when asked, during the team's break-up day at the TD Garden on Friday, whether or not he still wanted to return to Boston if Thomas wasn't traded, Rask said he still wants to re-sign with the B's.

"I mean, I think you guys know the answer to that question," said Rask. "I've always said that I like it here, and I want to come back.

"I think there's a clear plan," said Rask about his upcoming contract negotiations. "I think everybody's been talking about it for a long time now. It's not about the money. It's more about what's good for everybody. I've always said I liked to be here. I think we have a great group of guys and the organization is great, so I don't see why anybody wouldn't want to be here."

Rask said him and Thomas work well together, and hold an "honest competition" for playing time, when both are healthy.

"We've never had a problem with it, because I think Timmy's got one more year on his contract or something," said Rask. "We just work hard with each other, and we compete against each other. But at the end of the day, it's just who's at his best place. It's a pretty honest competition. So we never have a problem."

As far as Rask's health is concerned, he returned from an abdominalgroin injury for Game 6 against the Washington Capitals, and served as Thomas' backup goaltender for the final two games of the first-round playoff series.

He said he wouldn't have returned as a backup if he wasn't 100 percent. But Rask did say that he may be a little more cautious with his body in the future, in order to prevent those types of injuries.

"I felt good before that happened," said Rask. "It just popped. But I guess, when these things happen, you kind of have different urgency on things. You try to feel your body and adjust to your body a little bit more in different ways.

"Looking back, I kind of felt a little tight. But I didn't think it was anything major. But maybe next time, if I feel that way, I'll just stay back and take a day off or something."

Bruins need to "find a way to start playing with a lead"

Bruins need to "find a way to start playing with a lead"

BOSTON -- There’s only so long that a team can hope to thrive, or even survive, in the NHL if they’re constantly chasing the game on the scoreboard, and chasing the puck after digging themselves a hole. The Bruins have been that team in the first couple of weeks during the regular season, and made it five times in five games that they’ve given up the game’s first goal in an eventual 4-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens at TD Garden.

It’s a pattern that is long past getting old to Bruins head coach Claude Julien, who can’t seem to play the front-runner this season despite three comebacks that have allowed for a 3-2-0 record overall this season.

“I hope it’s not a habit. It’s certainly not what we’re looking for, but there’s no doubt. I think it’s pretty obvious that with the amount of games we’ve played, five games, we haven’t scored first,” said Julien. “We talked about that this morning, trying to get that first goal, and it hasn’t happened yet.”

The start to the game wasn’t really the problem on Saturday night as it’s been a couple of times this season. Instead the Bruins enjoyed a handful of quality scoring chances in the opening 20 minutes against the Habs, but couldn’t come through and finish off those plays when it might have meant an early lead.

Instead it lead to what Julien termed a “terrible” second period that was flat, full of mistakes and ended with the B’s trailing Montreal by a couple of goals. The Bruins scratched and clawed their way to making it a one-goal game in the third period, but that was as close as the Black and Gold would get in losing their ninth straight home game to the arch-rival Canadiens.

“It’s kind of been a story about how things are going for us this far, we’ve got to find a way to start playing with a lead. If you don’t capitalize on your chances, you see what happens when you come out [flat] in the second period,” said Torey Krug, who finished a game-worst minus-3 in the loss for the Bruins. “We had another poor second period and you know it’s kind of… you got to make sure that we put our hand on that and it doesn’t become a thing for the team this year. You see that when you don’t capitalize on chances early, that’s what’s going to happen.”

It’s been a positive development that the Bruins have shown the willingness and backbone to fight back into games after early deficits, and they showed that quality once again on Saturday night by scoring a couple of goals in the third period to keep things close. But the Bruins would be best served if they can start lighting the lamp a little earlier in these games, and see how the other half lives by playing with a comfortable lead every once in a while.