BOSTON — When the Bruins went on their Stanley Cup run back in the spring of 2011, they didn’t enter the postseason riding a wave of momentum going 5-4-1 in their last 10 games. The power play was virtually nonexistent and in the bigger picture, no one would have labeled their offense high-octane.
The Bruins were even pushed to the brink by the Canadiens in the first round before coming back to win the series.
The reasons for that are bountiful, but the biggest, anyone will admit, was the play of goaltender Tim Thomas. It was a glaring example of how a hot goaltender can make all the difference when the chips are down at the NHL’s final table.
And while Tuukka Rask hasn’t had the historical season Thomas had in 2010-11, the current Bruins starter has been really, really good this season. That level of play was taken to a different level on Thursday night, though.
Rask turned aside all 30 Tampa Bay Lightning shots he saw in his league-leading fifth shutout Thursday night. In the pro...