The boos came falling down upon him from the TD Garden faithful when he made his first save against the Senators. Unfortunately, he had already allowed a goal on the first shot he faced following a six-game absence from the Bruins lineup.
He was able to grasp the criticism he received after allowing what he referred to as a ?blatant? bad goal to Milan Michalek with 19 seconds left to send the game into overtime and eventually a shootout.
But that doesn?t mean he was happy about it.
?Yeah, I understand it, but I?m not happy,? Thomas said. ?Of course it?s tough when you hear boos like that and get it from your home crowd. It was a hard night. Thankfully I was able to recover and help the team win in the shootout, but like I said after the game that night, they bailed me out on what was probably my worst experience here.?
As Thomas pointed out, hearing those boos and going through occasional rough patches are to be expected. After all, this wasn?t the first time he was booed and it likely won't be the last. He's been around the hockey block and has seen it all before.
?That?s part of being a pro athlete, you know, the ?what have you done for me lately?? mentality,? he said. ?I?ve seen a lot worse and it's just part of the game. When you win they love you, and when you play bad they?re going to let you know. I?d rather they let me know because it means they care.?
Despite the shootout win over the Sens on Saturday, Thomas was distraught over his performance and took the blame for giving Ottawa a point they didn't deserve.
"I cost us the point. I felt terrible. I let the team down big time," he said after the 4-3 shootout win. "I feel like they deserved the win with the effort that they put throughout the game. They deserved to win outright. So at the time, it?s one of the worst feelings I?ve had in four years here with the Bruins."
But Thomas is moving on and the weekend's disappointment will simply go down as a lesson learned.
?I can?t dwell on that stuff. You just have to move on,? said the netminder, who is 6-6-3 with a 2.36 GAA and .915 save percentage this season. ?We have been playing better lately and I need to help the team to keep that going. I know I can be better, and that?s just one of those nights or games. You learn and move on.?