For the Boston Bruins, it has certainly been a strange past two seasons, especially when it comes to netminding.
When the 2010-11 season began, many folks in the media and fans alike felt that Bruins' netminder Tuukka Rask would be the starting goaltender for the team. This was mostly based upon the fact that Rask was terrific in 2009-10 when he went 22-12-5 with a 1.97 goals against average, a .931 save percentage and 5 shutouts.
Unfortunately for Rask, he got off to a slow start in 2010-11 and the starting goaltender position went back to Tim Thomas, who ended up having a season to remember for his hockey club. In the regular season, Thomas went 35-11-9 with a 2.00 goals against average, a .938 save percentage, and 9 shutouts en route to winning the Vezina Trophy as the league's best netminder in the regular season.
Of course, Thomas then had a postseason to remember. Thomas led the Bruins to their first Stanley Cup in 39 years and won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the league's most valuable player in the postseason.
For Rask, this meant a lot of time riding the bench and playing every once in awhile. When he did play last season, Rask was solid in winning 11 games, posting a 2.05 goals against average, stopped .929 of the shotes he faced and picked up 3 shutouts.