It's official: One of Boston's biggest heroes won't be wearing the black and gold next year.
Tim Thomas wrote on his Facebook page Sunday afternoon that he will sit out next year to spend more time on "friends, family and faith." He did not say if he ever plans to play again, saying, "What does this portend for the future? We'll see. … God's will be done."
Thomas was in the net as the Bruins steamed to their first Stanley Cup in decades last season, rejuvenating his career and winning individual awards in the process.
The team didn't have much of an offseason before returning to the ice to defend the title, and Thomas had to carry a heavier load than usual when backup goalie Tuukka Rask went down with an injury a few weeks before the playoffs began.
Thomas was solid but not as sharp as usual as the Bruins eventually succumbed in the first round to the Washington Capitals.
"From the earliest age I can remember, I've wanted to be a hockey player," Thomas wrote Sunday. "I've been blessed in my life to not only be able to live that dream but to achieve more than I ever thought possible.
"The single-minded focus that is necessary to accomplish a dream of this magnitude entails (by necessity) sacrifice in other areas and relationships in life."
Questions already surround Thomas' status with the team, as Rask is ready to take the starting role. If Thomas takes a season off, the loss of practice could mean he may never return to peak form and rejoin the team.