With Tim Thomas out of the picture, Tuukka Rask was given the opportunity to show that he could handle the pressure of being the team’s undisputed number one goaltender. Rask performed superbly in that role and is one of the key reasons why the Bruins made it all the way to the Stanley Cup Final.
That won’t be forgotten as he sits down to discuss his new contract with the Boston Bruins. He’s scheduled to become a restricted free agent on July 5.
After playing through a one-year, $3.5 million deal, $39 million over six years is seen as the starting point for Rask.
That’s a sizable annual cap hit, especially for a team that’s already close to the ceiling, but Rask seems very confident that the two sides will agree to a long-term deal.
“It would be an ideal situation. I want to play here forever, and hopefully that gets to happen,” Rask told CSN New England. “We’re going to make [the contract] happen. I’m not really worried that things are going to fall apart because we can’t make it work. Obviously we’re going to have some talks, but at the end of the day we’re going to leave all the [expletive] aside and make a deal that makes everybody happy.
“I don’t think I have to answer any of those questions anymore. I played good, and I proved to everybody again that I was capable of doing it. You look at the numbers, and they were good. If you analyze how I felt and looked at different times during the year, and that was pretty good too. I felt really good throughout the regular season and playoffs. You can always be better, but I felt pretty good.”
Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli also seems optimistic about the teams chances of making something work.
“He’s obviously had a terrific playoff, and we’d like to get him done as soon as we can,” Chiarelli said.