Tim Thomas Rebounds From Shaky Outing, Shows He’s Not Ready to Relinquish Top Spot to Tuukka Rask Just Yet

Tim Thomas Rebounds From Shaky Outing, Shows He's Not Ready to Relinquish Top Spot to Tuukka Rask Just YetAny thinking that Tim Thomas might be ready to relinquish his hold on the Bruins' No. 1 netminding job would be sadly mistaken.

After allowing a season-high four goals in Saturday's 4-2 loss in Dallas, Thomas could have been feeling a little pressure, even though his numbers this season are actually better than his league-leading goals-against average and NHL-record save percentage of a year ago.

It's just that understudy Tuukka Rask's numbers are even better. Rask has allowed just one goal on 104 shots in his last four appearances, going 4-0-0 with a 0.30 GAA and .990 save percentage in that span. Overall, Rask leads the NHL with a 1.61 GAA and a .945 save percentage this season.

But the wily veteran Thomas still has some tricks up his sleeve as well. The reigning Vezina and Conn Smythe winner stopped 30 of the 31 shots he faced Wednesday night as the Bruins rolled to a 6-1 win over the Devils in New Jersey. Thomas wasn't tested too often, but came up with some key stops when needed, including a memorable save he made by sending the puck away from the net with a header not usually seen outside of a soccer pitch.

So while Rask is nipping at his heels for playing time in Boston, Thomas is now closing fast in Rask's rearview mirror atop the NHL leaderboard, sitting second in save percentage at .940 and third in GAA at 1.90.

Of course, Thomas and Rask have stressed repeatedly that the competition between them is a friendly one. They bring out the best in each other and remain supportive of one another.

Thomas just made sure on Wednesday that nobody forgets he's still the lead act in this dynamic duo.

Have questions for Douglas Flynn’s mailbag? Send them to him via Twitter @douglasflynn or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week. 

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