Don Sweeney Sees ‘Hell Of Long Career’ For Jeremy Swayman With Bruins

'He knows that, the commitment we made to him'

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Jeremy Swayman technically has been demoted, but no word or action from the Bruins to this point indicates the young goaltender won’t be a big part of Boston’s long-term plans.

The Bruins re-signed veteran goalie Tuukka Rask to a team-friendly deal Tuesday. That meant Swayman simultaneously had to be sent down to Providence — a possibility he was told to prepare for entering his sophomore season.

That doesn’t make it any easier, though, after getting a taste of competing at the top level early in your career and knowing it’s temporary.

“I understand that disappointment, especially when you feel like you’ve positioned yourself being on an NHL team, you’ve had some success,” general manager Don Sweeney said via Zoom Tuesday.

“It’s generally not a straight, linear path. Take the opportunity to to work on your game and expand it and realize there’s challenges associated with everybody’s professional career. And in Jeremy, to his credit, recognizes all those things, you know?”

Swayman, not eligible for Boston’s taxi squad, reports to Providence on Wednesday. Sweeney noted that in the event of an injury or more COVID-19 issues, the 23-year-old goalie would be called back up, and Swayman asked if he’d get a spot in the net back if Linus Ullmark or Rask showed any struggle.

It wouldn’t be the first time Swayman beat out a backup, earning the role for the playoffs in his rookie season.

“Jeremy took it in stride as a professional and he’s extremely motivated to be a top flight goaltender, which we believe in,” Sweeney said. “He knows that, the commitment we made to him. Part of it was this summer, in trading a good young goaltender in Daniel Vladar and allowing Jeremy to play on opening night, for that matter. He knows he’s a big part of our current team as well as moving forward. Most importantly, he’s got a hell of a long career in front of him as a Boston Bruin.”

Ullmark, meanwhile, gets the start Wednesday against the Montreal Canadiens at TD Garden. Rask will dress for his first time this year, with puck-drop at 7 p.m. ET.

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