Bruins third-quarter grades: the goaltenders

Thomas/By S. Bradley

With 19 games remaining in the regular season, it’s time to grade the Bruins’ players’ performance through three quarters of the 2010-11 season.

The Bruins’ dreams of leaning on the best goaltending tandem in the NHL has come to fruition this season, especially with the recent improved play of sophomore Tuukka Rask.

Almost every night, the Bruins know exactly what they’re going to get from the guy between the pipes – and really that’s all you can ask in the NHL.

Here are my third-quarter grades for the goaltenders:

Tim Thomas

First-quarter grade: A

Midseason grade: A-minus

Third-quarter grade: A

There was a little drop-off in performance for Thomas when the consecutive starts were piling up. All they had to do was mix in a little rest, and suddenly the Bruins had themselves the Vezina Trophy favorite again with a goals-against average less than 2.00. I don’t know whether Thomas gains or loses points for his “fight” with Carey Price, so I’m just discounting it from this equation.

Rask/By S. Bradley

Tuukka Rask

First quarter grade: A-minus

Midseason grade: A-minus

Third-quarter grade: A-minus

Throughout this season, Rask has been very good but through a combination of a bad goal here or there, and some lackluster play in front of him, he hasn’t gotten the results the Bruins need. The 6-1 loss to Detroit could’ve set him into a tailspin. Instead he’s responded with a four-game winning streak and looks ready to keep Thomas fresh down the stretch.

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