(Note from Krantz: Between now and the start of the preseason on the 19th, I will be asking a pressing question about each team and attempting to answer it. Today it continues with the defending Stanley Cup champions, the Boston Bruins)
Question: Can Tim Thomas repeat?
For me, this hurts. As a Canadiens fan, to see the Booins celebrating and Zdeno Chara lifting the cup after he nearly ended the career of Max Pacioretty, it really hurt. It was something deeper than a rivalry. It was blood spilled. But then again, that’s all the Bruins are good at. Goonery. It won them the Stanley Cup-or did it?
See, I happen to hold the opinion that the main reason for the Bruins Cup victory was their goalie, Tim Thomas. There is no denial of that. He had one of the best seasons in memory, and backed it up with a just-as-good Playoffs.
2 years ago, the Bruins couldn’t trade Thomas for a can of paint thinner. 35, recently benched for Tuukka Rask and coming off a hip surgery, no one wanted him, and rightfully so. Then the Flint, Michigan native went all “wassup [expletives]” on the league this year.
However, he is still 37. Unless he’s Dominik Hasek, which I am 100% sure he is not, that’s not a prime age to be playing hockey, especially goaltender, at. I get the feeling that this was Thomas’ all-in season, his season where he works harder than he ever has before. And, don’t get me wrong, it paid off. But at age 37, I don’t think it’s possible to replicate the kind of season he just had.
Suffice it to say, no, I do not think Tim Thomas will come close to last season’s performance. I believe the Tuukka Rask era will pick up where it left off 2 years ago, and I have my doubts about how that will turn out. And nothing gives me greater pleasure to say than that.
And this. [Expletive] you, Chara.