Tuukka Rask wasn’t good enough Saturday night — and he knows it.
The Boston Bruins goaltender was pulled in favor of backup Anton Khudobin in the second period of Boston’s 4-3 Game 5 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs. With the win, the Leafs narrowed Boston’s lead in the first-round Stanley Cup playoffs series to 3-2, setting up a pivotal Game 6 in Toronto on Monday.
After the game, Rask — who allowed four goals on 13 shots — didn’t mince words when addressing his performance.
“Summary? (Laughs) Umm … I probably could’ve stopped more pucks with my eyes closed,” Rask said, via WBZ’s Michael Hurley “That’s about it. It’s on me, but moving on to the next one. Try to finish it off in Toronto.”
Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy was forthright after the game, saying Rask “didn’t have it.” And the 31-year-old netminder seemingly agreed.
“I didn’t have too many shots out there. Just one of those (nights where) you’re fighting it,” Rask said. “Those first two goals were nothing to do with tracking, but, you know, just never got into the game really and couldn’t make those stops that I should’ve made to keep the game tight, especially that third goal.
“We scored (to cut Toronto’s lead to 2-1), we had the momentum going, and then they get a chance and I couldn’t stop the puck. Those are the tough ones. As I said, it happens.”
Rask’s play in Game 5 certainly was disappointing, especially when you consider that it came on the heels of his virtuoso performance in the Bruins’ Game 4 victory. Still, Boston’s goalie is no stranger to the ebbs and flows of playoff hockey, and fans should expect him to rebound in Game 6.
And he’ll have to, or else the Bruins might be looking at a do-or-die, nerve-wrecking Game 7 in Boston on Wednesday.
Thumbnail photo via Tom Szczerbowski/USA TODAY Sports Images
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