February 28, 2012

Fischler Report: One-on-One with B's goalie Tuukka Rask

By Stan Fischler

Sooner or later Tim Thomas will step aside and turn the Bruins top goaltending job over to his backup Tuukka Rask. Our man in Beantown, Jared Lane, discussed the following issues with the Boston goalie. 

* KEYS TO BOSTON'S SUCCESS:

We focus on winning periods and going a period at a time, playing as a unit (and) helping each other out. It looks good when we play like that. We play as a unit. We don’t have gaps in the neutral zone and stuff like that. Playing as a team is the biggest key for us.

* BRUINS STRENGTH IN THIRD PERIODS:

We have always been a good team in the third when we are leading. We have been able to get these comebacks and it’s tremendous for the team’s confidence. The credit goes to the team’s work effort during practice; the guys are in good shape.

* HIS PERSONAL SUCCESS:

I try to stop every puck no matter what. As a goalie I don’t play to score, I just focus on every puck and so on. Guys have been able to score a lot of goals and play a solid 60-minute game. The biggest key has been playing a solid 60 minutes and then keeping the opposition on the outside and not giving too many scoring chances.

* PLAYING CONSISTENTLY:

It depends on how many starts I get. If I get more starting assignments, I will feel good and I’d get more wins and feel comfortable. But even if I play only once a week, I will feel great too. It’s different every week.

* IMPRESSION OF RANGERS AS A CUP THREAT:

They really work hard. They’re not in first place in the East for nothing. They’ve done a great job in the past years developing their guys and building their game. They’re a tough team to play against, and they work really hard, They don’t give up much. They don’t score much, but they really work hard. They really have all the tools to make a run in the playoffs.

GOSSIP

There are all kinds of verdicts on the Jeff Carter trade. Our Zach Weinstock likes the Blue Jackets’ end of the deal. Here’s why: “Because,” Weinstock explains. “The Kings are now the team the Flyers were afraid to be. Jack Johnson is a 25-year-old defenseman.  In three years he will be at the beginning of his prime.  Carter is a 27-year-old winger.  His prime is already over.  Anze KopitarMike Richards, Carter and Justin Williams are four forwards that total about a third of the Cap. Drew Doughty makes $7 million.  That’s half the Cap on five players, only one of which will still be in his prime in, say, 2015.  

Jonathan Quick (Hamden, Conn.) will be gone.  In order to compete, they will have to get good, cheap contributions from players such as Jonathan Bernier or from their first rounder from this year – but wait – they traded that pick to Columbus for the privilege of having Carter for the next ten years – AND they traded Brayden Schenn for Richards.  AND they traded Colton Teubert for Dustin Penner.

The sad news on the university scene is that Paul Kelly (Newton Highlands, Mass.) has resigned as the Executive Director of College Hockey, Inc. What’s surprising is that Kelly, who was on the job since Nov. 2009, has been traveling around the country attending games. Kelly’s p.r. ace, Nate Ewell will stay on as interim Executive Director.