Welcome to the final installment of the annual Top 30. It’s been a fun ride over the long summer months, but with hockey season upon us, let’s take a gander at the Top 10. In case you missed it, here are parts one and two. Before we get to the best tenders in the land, let’s take a look at the final two tenders who were relieved from their Top 30 duties of a year ago…
Miikka Kiprusoff- Retired: The reason Kipper is no longer on the list is pretty obvious: he chose to retire at the end of last season, even vetoing a trade to the Maple Leafs prior to calling it quits. The Finnish keeper was #15 on the list last season, and surely would have made another appearance had he not decided to hang ‘em up.
Nikolai Khabibulin- Chicago Blackhawks: The Bulin Wall checked in at #26 last season, when he was getting fairly consistent reps in Edmonton. However, since he decided to take on the role of veteran backup behind the newly extended Corey Crawford, he is sure to see his playing time significantly reduced. While I believe Khabby is still a solid keeper, the role change really forced my hand.
With that out of the way, ladies and gentlemen, rankings 10-1… Read more »
After dispatching a tough Washington Capitals team in the first round, the Rangers have been rewarded with the Boston Bruins as their next opponent. Boston is coming off a somewhat improbable victory over an upstart Maple Leafs squad who is trending in the right direction. Opposing The King in this series will be former Maple Leaf, Tuukka Rask.
Rask is a former 1st round pick of the Leafs (21st overall), who was moved to the Bruins for Andrew Raycroft (!) just before the 2007 season. Rask was putting up solid numbers in Finland, but was just 19 years old at the time of the deal. Toronto needed established goaltending now, and had Justin Pogge waiting in the wings. This left Rask expendable, and former Bruin’s interim GM and current Rangers assistant GM, Jeff Gorton, was more than willing to make that deal. Obviously, this one worked out well for Boston. Rask made it over to North America in 2009-2010, and has been groomed as Boston’s goalie of the future ever since.
Ok, enough with the history lesson, let’s break down Rask’s game. Since Tim Thomas was the starting goalie in Boston the last time I scouted the B’s, Rask gets the full format. General style, strengths, weaknesses and how the Rangers should approach the matchup. Here we go… Read more »