How Jeremy Swayman Is Approaching Possible Tuukka Rask Return

The Bruins likely will start with a Swayman-Ullmark tandem this season


Jeremy Swayman has the opportunity to win the Boston Bruins’ starting goalie job, but after that, everything is uncertain.

Swayman and newly-signed netminder Linus Ullmark will go into camp later this month fighting to win the role. It has the makings of a solid tandem, one that could see playing time split relatively evenly.

Where things get a little more unclear is what happens if Tuukka Rask returns. An unrestricted free agent, Rask only plans to re-sign with Boston if he feels healthy enough to play following offseason hip surgery. It’s a problem for down the road, as Rask won’t be finished rehabbing until, at the earliest, Christmastime.

Nevertheless, it’s going to be a topic that will loom large while Rask remains unsigned and without a firm declaration of his plan.

“He’s doing his job well and I want to do my job well,” Swayman said Wednesday at the Bruins’ annual charity golf tournament. “I think both of us want to do whatever is best for this team to win, and that’s all I care about is whatever is best for this team, so I’m going to do my job while I can and I’m sure he’s going to do the same, so I’m super excited to see what he does and likewise for me.”

You could forgive Swayman, a second-year pro, if that got to his head. But all signs show that he has the mental makeup to handle whatever challenges, both within and out of his control, emerge.

The Rask decision impacts Swayman perhaps the most, as he is waivers-exempt and Ullmark is not. From a business standpoint, it is easier to move Swayman off the roster than Ullmark.

But Swayman playing so well the Bruins have to keep space on the roster for him is basically the only thing Swayman has some control over. And the start of campaign to make that happen is rapidly approaching.

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