It’s Full Speed Ahead For Tim Thomas After Annual Slow Start

by NESN Staff

September 22, 2009

He may have a shiny new trophy and a hefty new contract, but after letting in five goals in Saturday's loss, Tim Thomas proved that nothing has changed on the ice.

And that's a good thing — believe me.

?Every year is the same thing with Timmy,? Bruins head coach Claude Julien told the Boston Herald in regards to Thomas' preseason debut against the Rangers. ?Timmy
will have a first game like he had but will eventually find his game.
It?s just a matter of a couple of games and he?s going to be OK. That?s
the way with [Thomas] and everybody is different. I remember Timmy was
the same way last year. I don?t worry about that any more because
you?ve got a Vezina Trophy here."

The skipper's right. Last preseason, Thomas let in four goals on just 21 shots in a 4-3 loss to the Capitals on Sept. 27. We all know how the regular season went for the Tank. Does a 2.10 GAA, 36 wins, and five shutouts ring a bell?

"Those games happen and it?s easier to handle those games when you are already in the flow in the middle of the season,? Thomas said. ?You want to get to the level where you are happy about your play and I think that?s what preseason is about."

The Rangers snuck five pucks past last season's Vezina winner on just 19 shots, good for a .737 save percentage — a far cry from his NHL-best .933 save percentage last season.

Thomas, like his head coach, isn't concerned and neither should Bruins fans. A slow start is part of the process for the B's backstop.

?I?m just working up to the spot where I feel comfortable about my game," he added. "I don?t want to start out slow but I?ve done this every year. Usually these games are a million miles from nowhere with nobody watching them but that wasn?t the case. Sometimes it takes awhile to get back into it. You wish that it wouldn?t. You work in the summer to put yourself in position where it doesn?t take too long but sometimes that just happens."

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