How Bruce Cassidy Felt About Tuukka Rask’s Performance In Hurricanes Rout

'I don't think we did anything in front of Tuukka to help him out tonight'


Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask took the ice for his second game of the season Tuesday against the Carolina Hurricanes and let up five first-period goals on a dozen shots in an eventual 7-1 defeat at TD Garden.

Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy, though, wasn’t left blaming Rask after the game as Boston came out sluggish, allowed the Hurricanes to get into inside ice, and ultimately the Bruins didn’t come away with a strong enough defensive effort in front of the goaltender.

“We didn’t do a very good job in front of him,” Cassidy said on a postgame video conference. “I think there’s a goal that we got beat one-on-one again and they got to the interior ice, I think that’s the save you want, but other than that, bang-bang play in the first one, deflection after we just made it a 2-1 game where we put guys on the ice that are defensive-minded players, and that was a big letdown for us.”

Cassidy referenced the fact that Boston’s top defensive pairing of Charlie McAvoy and Matt Grzelcyk was on the ice for two of the five first-period goals. Charlie Coyle and Oskar Steen compiled a team-worst minus-three during the contest while Boston’s fourth line centered by Tomas Nosek was minus-two.

Cassidy had more to say about them than Rask.

“The guys that are used to being relied on to keep the puck out of the net and be good, solid defensive players, kind of the bottom of the lineup and some of the D that are relied on that, they just didn’t get it done tonight for whatever reason,” Cassidy continued.

“But no, I mean, I don’t think we did anything in front of Tuukka to help him out tonight,” Cassidy added. “Unfortunately, like I said, it would have been one of those nights you would have needed an unbelievable effort from him to get any points at all, and that’s an unfair ask.”

Rask, who was pulled for Linus Ullmark during the first intermission, did take some blame, however. He admitted how he should have been able to bail the Bruins out even with those in front of him struggling to find their rhythm.

“I got to help them out a little bit,” Rask said after the game. “You’re not going to have, everybody’s not going to have their legs at all times. As a goalie you have to be there, step up and make a couple saves. Like you saw in the first, I should have made two or three saves there keep it tight, but it’s one of those nights.”

Rask acknowledged how he wouldn’t let it impact him going forward while Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron referred to it as a game where the Bruins would throw away the tape.

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