Boston Bruins fans got a taste of the promise that goaltender Tuuka Rask brings, and they liked it quite a bit.
The highly touted prospect made 34 saves Saturday afternoon to record his first NHL shutout in a 1-0 home win over the New York Rangers.
Rask was playing his first league game this season. The Finn made four appearances last year but was sent back down to Providence in the American Hockey League after training camp in September.
"You don't want to fail because if you fail you don't know when you're going to get another chance," Rask said after making 15 saves in the third period to become the third Bruins goalie to record a shutout this season.
"If you do good, you've shown that you're capable of playing at this level."
Tim Thomas had started the last several games due to an undisclosed injury to Manny Fernandez.
Scott Gomez and Markus Naslund each had five shots on Rask, including strong chances late in the third. Like with all good goalies, there was luck involved in the shutout as well, with the Rangers hitting the crossbar in the third period.
All-star goalie Henrik Lundqvist held up his end, stopping 26 shots for the Rangers.
Bruins rolling along
Marc Savard scored the only goal late in the second for Boston (36-8-6), assisted by Dennis Wideman and Milan Lucic.
The Bruins have gained points in their last five games (3-0-2) and led the Eastern Conference at game's end by 11 points over New Jersey.
Rask, who turns 22 in March, was selected by Toronto 22nd overall in the 2005 draft but was traded one year later in a deal that saw the established Andrew Raycroft head to the Maple Leafs.
Raycroft was a disappointment in Toronto but has rebounded with a solid season for Colorado.
"Give the kid credit," Savard said. "He's been waiting for his opportunity and he took advantage of it tonight. He's an NHL goaltender, we all know that. He's going to get his time, but right now he came in a did a good job for us."
New York (29-18-4) have now dropped two in a row and could be overtaken by the Philadelphia Flyers for fourth place in the conference later Saturday.With files from the Associated Press