Rask to Take Leave of Absence
Greg M. Cooper / USA TODAY Sports
Goaltender Tuukka Rask will take a leave of absence from the team over the next few days due to a personal matter, the Bruins announced on Friday.
During a short press conference following the announcement on Rask, Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said that the matter is not health-related, but is a private issue. Sweeney then refused to elaborate further, saying “I think it would be nice for every to respect Tuukka’s privacy, at this point.”
Rask played Thursday in the Bruins’ home game against the Vancouver Canucks, replacing Jaroslav Halak who had started the game but let in five goals halfway through the second period. Rask toned the damage down a fair amount, but three goals managed to slip past him before the game ended.
Rask has had an uncommon, less-than-stellar season up to this point. He has a 4-4 record, a 3.05 goals against average, and a .901 save percentage. In 2014, the year Rask won the Vezina Trophy for best goaltender in the league, his goals against average was 2.04 and his save percentage was .930.
At the press conference on Friday, Don Sweeney said that Rask had requested a leave of absence this morning from the club.
The team plays next against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night, where Jaroslav Halak will start. A backup goaltender will be called over the weekend to play as the backup.
Patrice Bergeron, when asked about Rask’s leave of absence, refused to go into any personal details, but did express his support for the team’s starting goaltender.
“Right here we’re behind him and supporting him 100 percent,” Bergeron said. “All I can say is that he’s a great friend and we’re here for him.”
Rask is expected to return within the week, as Sweeney said the leave of absence would be over the next few days.