The Bruins locked up their goalie of the future Wednesday evening
Apologies to everyone about being off for almost a week, I was on vacation with no internet access over the weekend and have been busy since I got back, but I will be back posting daily now. On to business.
Earlier this evening the Bruins signed goaltender Tuukka Rask to an 8 year contract worth $56 million. Rask signed a one-year deal last June that benefited both team and player. That $3.5 million contract gave Rask the opportunity to prove to head coach Claude Julien and GM Peter Chiarelli he was worthy of a long term commitment from the team.
When Tim Thomas announced he would not return for this passed season, Rask became the undisputed starting goalie for the season. He earned his stripes throughout the season by leading the Bruins to the 4 seed in the Eastern Conference, and continued his stellar play in the playoffs by leading Boston to the Stanley Cup Finals against Chicago.
Rask was rewarded for his work earlier this evening when he and the Bruins made the deal official. Boston now has its goalie of the future and Rask has some financial security. This deal ties Rask with Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators as the NHL's highest paid goalie.
The Bruins were comfortable giving Rask an 8 year pact because he proved himself as an elite net-minder. I believe that Rask also has the mental make up to not become complacent with this deal. Many of these long contracts have been given out in the NHL recently, and some have been met with backlash. Just ask the Islanders how Rick DiPietro worked out when they signed him to a 15 year $67.5 million extension in 2006. They will now be paying him $1.5 million a year until 2029 to NOT play for them just to save $4.5 million in cap space.
Rask is different than DiPietro. The contracts are different. DiPietro failed, Rask will not.
The Bruins now have and elite goalie locked up for the prime of his career, and they can continue to build around him and try to raise another banner up into the rafters of the Garden.