screen-shot-2017-04-01-at-3-46-48-pmBy Sam Gordon 3/29/2017

It’s happened again. For the second straight year, Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask was inactive because of injury in a game with playoff implications. But is there more to the story?

The numbers show Rask isn’t exactly a big game performer. In season-defining and postseason games, the statistics show Rask struggles with keeping the puck out of the net.

This season is no different. Rask gave up three or more goals in a four game skid this past March jeopardizing the Bruins postseason hopes. This is troubling for Bruins fans and head coach Bruce Cassidy, who was not afraid to criticize the play of his goalie.

“He needed to be better on some of those goals,” Cassidy said. “It’s March 24, I mean really, our focus needs to be there, so you hope it’s more fatigue than focus this time of year, but I can only speculate.”

The Bruins put their playoff fate in the hands of backup goalie Anton Khudobin, and he answered the call in the win over the Islanders making 18 saves.

Despite the great play by Khudobin, Cassidy maintains that Rask is still the team’s top goaltender. As the season comes to a close, the Bruins head coach wants to make sure Rask gets his rest.

“He’s our No. 1 and his health is very important,” Cassidy said. “At this time of year, it gets tougher and tougher with any player that’s been overplayed.”