Just because the Boston Bruins signed goaltender Linus Ullmark in free agency on Wednesday does not mean Tuukk Rask’s time as a member of the organization has come to an end. At least, not according to GM Don Sweeney who said the signing of Ullmark was simply a depth move and play to have flexibility for when Rask is healthy and ready to return.
The Bruins caught many by surprise when they gave $20 million to Ullmark in free agency on Wednesday. There was still an expectation Rask would be back with the team, the organization had Daniel Vladar and Jeremy Swayman in the system and Ullmark wasn’t likely coming in to serve as a backup.
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Ultimately, Vladar was traded to Calgary but there were still questions about what this meant for Rask. Was he not coming back? Did the Bruins know something others didn’t?
In the end, Sweeney says the Ullmark signing was done to give Rask all the time in the world he needed to get healthy and the team would run with three goalies when Rask returned. Perhaps a trade happens at that time, or knock on wood, there’s an injury that means not all three netminders will be in the rotation at the same time, but the Bruins felt it was better to have options than not.
Sweeney said, “We needed to be prepared and allow Tuukka [Rask] all the time he needs to get healthy.” He noted that Rask’s surgery went well, the goalie is in good spirits and said, “I think we’ve always left the door open for Tuukka to return.”
Can the Bruins Run Three Goalies?
As has been shown in the past, three goalies in your system doesn’t tend to work very well in the NHL. The New York Rangers tried it for a couple of seasons and it wound up being a bad plan. Alexander Georgiev has actually requested a trade from the Rangers this offseason.
Ullmark is a starter, Swayman had a great season and Rask is a Vezina Trophy caliber netminder. That seems like an awfully crowded crease and one would imagine something’s got to give in that respect when Rask returns.
Sure, Rask isn’t likely to keep playing long. This upcoming season may be his last. And, potentially this Ullmark signing is the Bruins way of privately saying, we’re moving on, if they publicly say he’ll be welcomed back with open arms.
Next: Corey Perry Signs 2-Year Deal With Tampa Bay Lightning
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July 30, 2021 at 6:31 am
Why are you believing Sweeney? Clearly he’s lying. They have NO intention of bringing Rask back UNLESS one of Ullmark or Swayman stink up the joint, which is unlikely so…
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