Northeast Division: Leafs’ Pogge provides cautionary tale for Rask



For those still processing the news from Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli that he expects veteran Dany Sabourin to provide competition for prospect Tuukka Rask in pursuit of the No. 2 goaltender spot behind Tim Thomas during this fall’s training camp, there’s the tale of Toronto “goaltender of the future” Justin Pogge, as related by Michael Traikos of the National Post today.

Pogge is now 23 and five years removed from his draft day, when he was initially branded with the above-mentioned moniker. And he seems off the path toward his goal of being the Leafs’ No. 1 puck-stopper. What does this have to do with Rask? Well, it’s simple. Pogge has struggled dealing with the spotlight, both in the minors and the NHL. While Rask has accounted for himself well during two full AHL seasons and in the occasional appearance with Boston, there’s no telling how he’s going to react down the road when given a regular NHL role.

Now Rask has the benefit of not being a savior of sorts for the Bruins. With Thomas locked up long term, Rask can settle in slowly to the role of No. 2, and hopefully at some point 1A in Boston’s netminding plans. But a little competition never hurts. And speaking of hurt, Sabourin is the perfect insurance policy should Rask or Thomas suffer any type of injury.

Nonetheless, those of you waiting for the “Rask Era” to dawn with bated breath might just want to settle down and have patience. And enjoy the fact that the Bruins should be covered in net no matter how long it takes for Rask to establish himself at the NHL level. And if for some reason Rask gets caught in a Pogge-sized rut, Boston is prepared to deal with it.

Click Here