Are The Bruins in Goalie Trouble?

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Are the Boston Bruins in goalie trouble?  Not in the way that most would think when they hear goalie trouble.  This is more along the lines of do they have too many goalies playing at the top of their game, or is this making a friendly rivalry between the tendys to continue to play at peak performance?

Photo courtesy of lastwordonsports.com

In the beginning of March, Tuukka Rask went down with an injury, which then lead to Jaroslav Halak to become the starting goaltender.  With Halak starting and Rask sidelined, the Bruins needed to bring up a goalie from Providence - and it was between Dan Vladar and Jeremy Swayman.  Vladar got the nod and started his first NHL game against the Pittsburg Penguins on March 16, 2021.  

Vladar got his first career win with a 2-1 victory.  With Halak and Vladar playing well, this allowed Rask to take his time to get healthy.  Rask did try to come back in mid March, but ended up leaving the game after the first period when he re-aggravated his lower body injury.  After that game we would not see Rask until he made his next start on April 15th.  During that span of Rask being injured, Halak ended up being put in COVID protocol and has missed the last twelve games.  During this time the Boston Bruins had to lean on their two rookie goaltenders Vladar and Swayman. 

During the Vladar/Swayman one-two punch, the two rookies went 7-3-1.  In this time Swayman proved to outplay Dan Vladar by going 5-1-0 with a 1.65 GAA and .943 save percentage, with one shutout on his six game resume.  With Swayman being the hotter goaltender, the Bruins sent Vladar back to Provedience and have chosen to keep Swayman up with the big club splitting time with Rask until Halak is fully healthy.

Now that Rask has returned to the lineup and Halak is close to coming back from COVID protocol, the Bruins need to figure out what they want to do with this three-headed monster of goalies between Rask, Halak, and Swayman.  As of right now it has been a rotation of Rask and Swayman starting with Halak being the backup goaltender.  I’m sure we will be seeing Halak get the start in one of the upcoming games. 

So the question is - what will the Bruins do with the three goaltenders until the playoffs start when Rask gets the start?  Do they roll all three to keep Rask fresh going into the playoffs?  Should the Bruins give Rask more playing time to get him settled and ready to go seeing how he has missed some time in this shorten season already?  With how well Swayman has been playing do you continue to go with him on Rasks off nights and keep Halak as strictly a backup role?  Do you have Halak and Swayman rotate on Rasks off night so Halak does see some full games before the end of the season?

There are a lot of question marks around the Bruins goalies.  However they are all positive questions that will be answered in the upcoming weeks.

Potentially this will be a good problem for the Bruins to have as they are currently in a tight race with the other three teams in the east that are currently in playoff spots.  Having a fresh goalie ready to go night in and night out could not only help the Bruins clinch a playoff spot, it could help them leap frog some of the teams ahead of them in the standings and grab home ice advantage. 

The Bruins will be playing their final ten games in the next 18 days.  This three goalie carousel might just be the ticket the Bruins need to make a long playoff run.


Follow Ryan on Twitter @BigCountry7914

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Boston Sports Syndicate: Are The Bruins in Goalie Trouble?
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