Thomas/By S. Bradley

WILMINGTON, Mass. — Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas is off to the hottest post-expansion start of any NHL goaltender ever.

Today the league lavished him with some recognition.

Thomas was named as the NHL’s First Star for last week. San Jose’s Joe Thornton and Chicago’s Duncan Keith were second and third, respectively.

“To be honest, I thought maybe I’d be in contention one of the other weeks, last week too,” said Thomas, whose two shutouts against Toronto and Ottawa lowered his goals-against average to 0.50 for the season. “But it’s always an honor when you get recognized league-wide like that. It’s a good thing.”

Thomas’ 6-0-0 start ties him with Cecil “Tiny” Thompson for best start from the outset of the season by a Bruins goaltender. So, has Thomas been brushing up on his Bruins’ history, mainly Thompson’s legacy?

“Not much,” said Thomas when asked how much he knows of the Hall-of-Famer. “I even forgot that his first name is Cecil because I was wondering ‘Was his real name Tiny?’”

“I’d heard the name even before I was in the Boston organization way back when,” Thomas continued. “So it’s just a lot like being named in the same sentence as Vezina. Whenever with your name is associated with other people that have that level of success, it’s an honor.”

Thomas’ next start could be a true history-maker, which would be no ‘tiny’ accomplishment.