Tuukka Rask does just enough to help Bruins avoid elimination

Evan Marinofsky
April 22, 2019 - 6:29 am
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Tuukka Rask needed a "B-" on Sunday's test to keep his team above passing and that's exactly the grade he got. 

Rask and the Boston Bruins' rear ends were on the line in Game 6 and they came through. However, during the game, the storylines flipped. Up until that point, Rask played well enough to cover up for the mistakes made by the Bruins skaters in front of him. 

On Sunday, the Bruins skaters played well enough to cover up the guy behind them.  

The first goal given up by Rask was one he'd probably like back. Morgan Rielly fired a shot on net from the point that Rask reacted to a second too late. Right after the puck went in, Rask pleaded goaltender interference but the Bruins didn't pursue it. 

For the second half of the first period and most of the second, Rask didn't face much. After two, the shots were 30-15 in favor of the black and gold. 

Rask's biggest test during the middle 20 minutes was on a John Tavares breakaway when he closed up his five-hole and took away all options to score. 

Within the first three minutes of the third period, Rask stoned Tavares again after a Mitch Marner wraparound and denied an Auston Matthews rush from the right side. 

Then Matthews got revenge. 

With 4:15 gone in the third, Jake Gardiner sent a pass across the zone to Matthews who ripped a wrist shot above the right shoulder of Rask. On the video, you can see Rask overcommit to cover the post, leaving that area of the net open. 

That's two on Rask. 

In the final 10 minutes, Rask stood tall as the Maple Leafs turned the tables on the Bruins. They only had nine shots in the period, but Rask stopped all six after the Matthews goal. 

Again: Rask did just enough. 

Last time they were in Toronto (Game 4), the Bruins were bailed out by Rask, who made spectacular saves down the stretch to keep the lead.  

In this one, Rask only faced 24 shots and made 22 saves. It wasn't his best performance and he wasn't tested nearly as much as Frederik Andersen, who stopped 37 of 40 shots. 

But it was just enough to get the Bruins to a Game 7. 

A "B-".

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