Boston Bruins: Tuukka Rask Is Winning Games, Not Defense

By Tony Tranghese
Adam Hunger- USA TODAY Sports

Tuukka Rask has been great. The Boston Bruins goaltender has put the Bruins on his back over the last couple of games. In return, the Bruins have earned some much-needed points. Rask stopped 43 shots last night against the New York Rangers and posted a save percentage of .977. The lone goal that the Rangers scored was on the power play, breaking the Bruins’ consecutive streak of penalty kills.

Everyone is riding the Rask wave. His numbers and play are far from surprising. I am more concerned with the fact that the Bruins allowed 44 shots to a bad Rangers team.

The Rangers had a lot to prove against the Bruins. Boston eliminated them from the playoffs, and a Rangers vs. Bruins is always a big deal. The Bruins were also coming off back-to-back games where they have underperformed all year. If it wasn’t for Rask, the Bruins would have dropped more points in those back-to-back games than they had.

Bruins fans have wondered how the Bruins’ goaltending situation was going to play out this year. Rask has carried the bulk of the workload and has performed to this point. It will be interesting to see what happens when the Bruins don’t show up to a game and backup goalie Chad Johnson is expected to save 43 shots in a close game. I don’t see it happening. While Rask is performing and single-handedly winning games, I don’t believe Johnson is capable of doing the same.

If you’re a Bruins fan and you have concerns over relying heavily on one player, believe me — I understand.

Tony is a columnist for you can follow him on twitter

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